The fire unleashed near the Yosemite American park, after the one declared at the beginning of the month, has already affected some 6,300 hectares and is still not controlled, according to the latest update from the fire service of Californiadating from this Sunday afternoon.
The fire, whose origin is being investigated, was declared on Friday and has affected the county of Mariposawhere shelters have been set up to accommodate the population.
Nearly 6,000 people have been ordered to evacuate and the fire threatens some 2,000 structures, including residential and commercial buildings, according to The Washington Post. It has totally destroyed ten and partially damaged five.
The fire is about 30 miles (48 kilometers) from the national park Yosemiteone of the most popular in the US, which among its attractions includes the El Capitan monolith and the Mariposa forest, where some trees, up to 2,000 years old, reach heights of almost 80 meters.
“It’s gone from bad to worse” indicated the Twitter account of the interactive map of the county.
The fire has forced road closures and has been fueled by high temperatures, extreme weather conditions and wind.
California Governor Gavin Newsom has declared a state of emergency and has asked state agencies to mobilize their staff and resources to contain it. Less than 16 kilometers east of that fire, the one unleashed on July 7 and named Washburn has already affected some 2,000 hectares and is 79% controlled, according to the latest data.
The US Forest Service managed to keep those flames away from the iconic Yosemite redwoods, but the fire spread eastward until it approached another protected park, the Sierra National Forest.
The reasons for that first fire, which began inside the Yosemite protected area, are still under investigation, although local authorities pointed to a probable human origin in the middle of the month, since there was no lightning that day.