Northern California wildfire threatens Lake Tahoe

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A raging Northern California fire has prompted even more evacuation orders as the massive, fast-spreading blaze threatened the mountain towns around the pristine Lake Tahoe.

All residents near the Lake Tahoe Basin were ordered to evacuate late Sunday after officials, who had believed they could contain it, warned that the two-week-old Caldor Fire had “let loose.”

“To put it in perspective, we’ve been seeing about a half-mile of movement on the fire’s perimeter each day for the last couple of weeks, and today, this has already moved at 2.5 miles on us, with no sign that it’s starting to slow down,” said Cal Fire Division Chief Erich Schwab.

Parts of the area are so rugged that fire crews have had to carry hoses by hand from the highway to put out spot fires.

The Caldor Fire broke out Aug. 14 and is only 19 percent contained after destroying more than 600 structures and putting at least 18,000 under threat.

The blaze has already burned 245 square miles, an area larger than the city of Chicago.

Smoke from the Caldor Fire along highway 50 in Lake Tahoe, California, on August 29, 2021.
REUTERS/Fred Greaves
The Caldor Fire near the  Lake Tahoe region in California on August 29, 2021.
The Caldor Fire near the Lake Tahoe region in California on August 29, 2021.
OSH EDELSON/AFP via Getty Images
The Caldor Fire has burned over 165,000 acres, destroyed over 650 structures and is currently 13 percent contained.
The Caldor Fire has burned over 165,000 acres, destroyed over 650 structures and is 13 percent contained.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Triple-digit temperatures that are expected to last several days have fire officials concerned.

The additional evacuation orders issued Sunday included parts of Alpine and El Dorado counties.

Barton Memorial Hospital in South Lake Tahoe evacuated all of its patients over the weekend as the fire approached.

Firefighters are concerned that the triple-digit temperatures will continue to keep the blaze going.
Firefighters are concerned that the triple-digit temperatures will continue to keep the blaze going.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Firefighters have started using the snow blowing machines at the Sierra-at Tahoe ski resort to help combat the fast moving Caldor Fire.
Firefighters have started using the snowblowing machines at the Sierra at Tahoe ski resort to help combat the fast-moving Caldor Fire.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
The Department of Defense is deploying 200 Army soldiers to help battle firefighters in Northern California as both the Dixie fire and Caldor Fire continue to rage.
The Department of Defense is deploying 200 US soldiers to help firefighters in Northern California as both the Dixie Fire and Caldor Fire continue to rage.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

More than 15,200 firefighters in California are battling a dozen large fires.

In the state’s south, evacuation orders were put in place after a fire tore through Cleveland National Forest on Saturday and saw at least one firefighter injured.

The Dixie Fire, California’s second-largest in history, was 48 percent contained as of Sunday.

The Sierra-at Tahoe ski resort sits in the path of destruction caused by the Caldor Fire.
The Sierra at Tahoe ski resort sits in the path of destruction caused by the Caldor Fire.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
The Caldor Fire burns in trees at the Sierra-at Tahoe ski resort.
The Caldor Fire burns in trees at the Sierra at Tahoe ski resort.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

That fire is burning in the Sierra-Cascades region, about 65 miles north of the Caldor Fire.

The Department of Defense is deploying 200 US soldiers to help firefighters in Northern California.

They are sending eight converted military planes that can dump thousands of gallons of water on the wildfires.

With Post wires

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