California: Firefighter assigned to fire dies of illness

California: Firefighter assigned to fire dies of illness

A firefighter died of illness while assigned to one of California’s largest wildfires, authorities said, the first death in a season when flames have destroyed thousands of buildings and forced entire towns to vacate.

Edwin Zuñiga of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) said he could not provide further details about the death.

The Dixie Fire started in mid-July in the northern Sierra Nevada and has become the second largest on record in state history. It has calcined about 3,625 square kilometers (1,400 square miles) in 5 counties and three national parks and forests, according to Cal Fire.