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May 8, 2013

Wildfires in California

California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. yesterday declared this week as "Wildfire Awareness Week" in recognition of last week's devastating fires northwest of Los Angeles. His proclamation noted, "In an average year, wildfires burn 900,000 acres of California's timber and grasslands." Rains that moved into the area on Monday helped extinguish the fires that started last Thursday along US Route 101 near Camarillo Springs and Thousand Oaks, endangering some 4,000 homes. -- Lloyd Young ( 31 photos total)

A man on a rooftop looks at approaching flames as the Springs Fire continues to grow on May 3 near Camarillo, Calif. The wildfire has spread to more than 18,000 acres on day two and is 20 percent contained. (David Mcnew/Getty Images)

Smoke from the Springs Fire in Ventura County, Calif., is seen in this May 2 NASA handout satellite image. The wildfire along the California coast northwest of Los Angeles threatened thousands of homes and a military base May 3, as about 200 dwellings were evacuated and a university campus closed. (NASA) #

A resident pulls a hose line to attempt to stop flames from spreading down the hillside as the Springs Fire pushes towards the coast near Camarillo, Calif., on May 2. The wind-driven wildfire raging along the California coast north of Los Angeles prompted the evacuation of hundreds of homes and a university campus on Thursday as flames engulfed several farm buildings and recreational vehicles near threatened neighborhoods. (Gene Blevins/Reuters) #

A firefighting helicopter makes a drop on a wildfire on May 3 in Thousand Oaks, Calif. A huge Southern California wildfire burned through coastal wilderness to the beach on Friday then stormed back through canyons toward inland neighborhoods when winds reversed direction. (Hans Gutknecht/Los Angeles Daily News via Associated Press) #

Firefighter Justin Romero of the New Mexico based Silver City Hotshots uses a drip torch to build a backfire up the mountain off Potrero Road to control the Springs Fire near Newbury Park, Calif., on May 3. A fierce, wind-driven wildfire spread on Friday along the California coast northwest of Los Angeles, threatening 4,000 homes and a military base as residents were evacuated ahead of the flames and a university campus was closed. (Patrick T. Fallon/Reuters) #

A rabbit runs from a wildfire burning along the Pacific Coast Highway near Point Mugu State Park in Ventura County, Calif., on May 3. Some 4,000 homes were threatened by a growing wildfire northwest of Los Angeles that has forced the closure of California's scenic coastal highway, firefighters said Friday. (Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images) #

Firefighters battle high winds and rough terrain in the Panther Fire that started just over 10 miles north of Butte Meadows on May 1 in Butte Meadows, Calif. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record via Associated Press) #

A US Forestry firefighter fights a wall of fire during an out of control wildfire on May 2 in Camarillo, Calif. Hundreds of firefighters are battling wind and dry conditions as over 6000 acres have already been burned northwest of Los Angeles. (Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) #

Huge blooms of smoke looking like a volcano has gone off to the races through the canyons during the second day of the Springs Fire in the mountain areas of Ventura County, Calif., on May 3. A fierce, wind-whipped brush fire spread on Friday along the California coast northwest of Los Angeles, threatening several thousand homes and a military base as more than 1,100 dwellings were ordered evacuated and a university campus was closed. (Gene Blevins/Reuters) #

A firefighter surveys burned hills near Hidden Valley at the Springs Fire on May 4 near Camarillo, Calif. Improving weather conditions are helping firefighters get the upper hand on the wildfire which has grown to 28,000 acres and is now 56 percent contained. (David Mcnew/Getty Images) #

Joe Kiener stands in what was once the kitchen of his home on May 2, in Riverside County, Calif. His home was completely destroyed as the Summit Fire rolled through his neighborhood late Wednesday. (Kurt Miller/The Press-Enterprise via Associated Press) #

Cal Fire Planning Section Chief Steve Beach, left, and Fire Analyst Behavior Capt. Tim Chavez, both from Riverside, look over incident maps of the Panther Fire at Incident Command post at Silver Dollar Fairgrounds on May 3 in Chico, Calif. (Jason Halley/The Chico Enterprise-Record via Associated Press) #

Hand crews work on the fire line after a wildfire near Point Mugu, Calif., on May 4. High winds and withering hot, dry air were replaced by the normal flow of damp air off the Pacific, significantly reducing fire activity. (Ringo H.W. Chiu/Associated Press) #

A woman uses a shovel to fight a spot fire while a main fire front approaches the Blackiston Ranch as the Springs Fire continues to grow on May 3 near Camarillo, Calif. The wildfire has spread to more than 18,000 acres on day two and is 20 percent contained. (David Mcnew/Getty Images) #

US Forest Service firefighters walk a scorched ridge at the Springs Fire on May 4 near Camarillo, Calif. Improving weather conditions are helping firefighters get the upper hand on the wildfire which has grown to 28,000 acres and is now 56 percent contained. (David Mcnew/Getty Images) #

Horseback riders pass the burned area of the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area in Newbury Park, Calif., on May 6 where some cactus survived the spring fire. Investigators ruled out arson as the cause of the fire that charred 44 square miles at the western end of the Santa Monica Mountains. (Tina Burch/Tina Burch via Associated Press) #

A wildfire burns in the Banning Bench area of Riverside county on May 1 in Banning, Calif. (Richard Lui/The Desert Sun via Associated Press) #

A firefighter battles to protect a CalTrans Maintenance Station and Fuel Depot from the Springs Fire near the Pacific Coast Highway and the Los Angeles County Line at Malibu, Calif., on May 2. A wind-driven wildfire raging along the California coast north of Los Angeles prompted the evacuation of hundreds of homes and a university campus on Thursday as flames engulfed several farm buildings and recreational vehicles near threatened neighborhoods. (Patrick T. Fallon/Reuters) #

Members of a handcrew take a rest along a hillside in Hidden Valley, Calif., on May 4. High winds and withering hot, dry air was replaced by the normal flow of damp air off the Pacific, significantly reducing fire activity. (Ringo H.W. Chiu/Associated Press) #

Firefighters keep watch over the wildfire at Point Mugu, Calif., on May 3. The 15 1/2-square-mile blaze was only 10 percent contained on Friday, and the work of more than 900 firefighters, aided by air tankers, was just beginning. (Ringo H.W. Chiu/Associated Press) #

Smoke races through the canyons during the second day of the Springs Fire in the mountain areas of Ventura County, Calif., on May 3. A fierce, wind-whipped brush wildfire spread on Friday along the California coast northwest of Los Angeles, threatening several thousand homes and a military base as more than 1,100 dwellings were ordered evacuated and a university campus was closed. (Gene Blevins/Reuters) #

A brush fire burns at a shooting range on the beach at Navel Base Ventura County on May 3. Santa Ana winds that sent a Southern California wildfire barreling to the sea have died but flames are still running through coastal canyons, threatening scattered homes and wilderness. (Nick Ut/Associated Press) #

Firefighters start a backfire into the Santa Monica Mountains off Potrero Road in order to control the Springs Fire near Newbury Park, Calif., on May 4. (Patrick T. Fallon/Reuters) #

Fire-fighters battle walls of flames to protect homes during the second day of the Springs Fire in the mountain areas of Ventura County, Calif., on May 3. (Gene Blevins/Reuters) #

Ernie Legassey, left, and Casey Daigle return to their car after their camping trip was cut short due to a wildfire burning towards Point Mugu at the Pacific Ocean on Pacific Coast Highway in Ventura County on May 2. A wind-driven brush fire raging northwest of Los Angeles prompted the evacuation of hundreds of homes and a university campus on Thursday as flames engulfed several farm buildings and recreational vehicles at the fringe of threatened neighborhoods. (Patrick T. Fallon/Reuters) #

A lifeguard tower stands on the beach at Point Mugu State Park as the Springs Fire burns on the nearby hillside on May 3. (Jonathan Alcorn/Reuters) #

A firefighter douses embers from the Springs Fire at Point Mugu State Park on May 3. (Jonathan Alcorn/Reuters) #

Firefighters battle to protect the Sycamore Nature Center from the Springs Fire near the Pacific Coast Highway and the Los Angeles County Line in Malibu, Calif., on May 2. (Patrick T. Fallon/Reuters) #

Firefighters battle to protect a CalTrans Maintenance Station and Fuel Depot from the Springs Fire near the Pacific Coast Highway and the Los Angeles County Line in Malibu, Calif., on May 2. (Patrick T. Fallon/Reuters) #

The Springs Fire is reflected on wet sand at the beach near the the Pacific Coast Highway and north of the Ventura County Line on May 2. The wind-driven wildfire raging along the California coast north of Los Angeles prompted the evacuation of hundreds of homes and a university campus on Thursday as flames engulfed several farm buildings and recreational vehicles near threatened neighborhoods. (Jonathan Alcorn/Reuters) #

A burned cross along the side of the road with fire scorched mountains shows the damaged done by the Camarillo Springs Fire near Point Mugu State Park 40 miles north of Los Angeles, Calif., on May 4. The Camarillo Springs Fire which has burned over 30,000 acres has been 40 percent contained. (Michael Nelson/European Pressphoto Agency) #



 
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