Forest Fire Threatens Yosemite National Park
A out-of-control wildfire burning Sunday (July 27) near an entrance to Yosemite National Park has destroyed eight homes and is threatening thousands more as flames forced the authorities to cut power to one of the nation's most popular national parks.
More than 18,000 acres have burned since Friday, as wooded slopes ignited in hot, dry conditions that have plagued California for months. The fire was completely uncontained Sunday, according to the Associated press.
“There’s no fire history in the past hundred years,” Daniel Berlant, spokesman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire, said Sunday. “That’s one of the reasons this fire’s been able to burn so erratically.”
“Because the ash and smoke is so heavy, there’s zero visibility,” said Wayne Barringer, a Cal Fire spokesman.
A state fire spokeswoman, Karen Guillemin, said the blaze, dubbed the Telegraph Fire, was sparked by someone target shooting but would not elaborate.
About 2,000 firefighters were battling the fire and hundreds more were headed to the scene along the Merced River west of Yosemite.