Southern California Wildfire Forces 100,000 to Evacuate
A Southern California wildfire forced about 100,000 people to evacuate their homes on Friday, The Associated Press reports. Los Angeles Police Chief Michel Moore said the residents of over 20,000 homes were ordered to flee as firefighters fought the 7-square mile fire. Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas said at least 25 homes were damaged, and confirmed one fatality. A man near the fire went into cardiac arrest and died, but Terrazas provided no further details. The fire started at around 9 p.m. Thursday evening in Sylmar, and proceeded to spread at a rate of 800 acres an hour. According to Terrazas, winds topping 50 mph and low humidity levels contributed to the fire's rapid spread. “As you can imagine the embers from the wind have been traveling a significant distance which causes another fire to start,” he said. The cause of the blaze is not reportedly known. This comes after energy company PG&E shut down power for almost 800,000 customers in Northern California in a bid to prevent potential wildfires amid dangerous winds.