(LOS ANGELES) — Twin wildfires in Southern California have charred nearly 5,000 acres as an extreme heat wave continues to wreak havoc in the state.
The two fires, dubbed the reservoir and fish, are raging in the Angeles National Forest above Azusa and Duarte, forcing evacuations in the San Gabriel Valley near Los Angeles. The evacuations remained in place Tuesday night and fire officials will reevaluate the situation on Wednesday.
Earlier Tuesday, officials estimated that the wildfires had burned a total of about 5,400 acres but the size was reduced to 4,900 after the area was remapped later in the day. Officials said that number remained the same Wednesday morning as they work to secure the line around the perimeter. Firefighters had contained about 10 percent of the fires as of 6:40 a.m. local time, according to the Angeles National Forest.
Although the two fires have not merged, officials are now referring to them collectively as the San Gabriel Complex fire.
Homeowner Gordon Witby said Tuesday the flames were close to his house in Duarte a day earlier, but the scene was calm now.
“The flames were so high. And so fierce,” Witby told ABC Los Angeles affiliate KABC-TV.
With the region suffering from triple-digit temperatures, fires have threatened areas north and south of Los Angeles, too. In the San Diego County town of Potrero, a blaze called the border fire burned through about 1,500 acres this weekend, prompting evacuations. In the Santa Barbara area, the sherpa fire, which began last week, has singed more than 7,000 acres.
California is not the only state fighting against Mother Nature; more than 20 fires are raging across eight western states.
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