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Deadly Wildfires Spread Across Western US

Raging wildfires have spread throughout the western U.S. as the region experienced record-breaking temperatures and a historic drought, multiple sources reported.

The wildfires forced evacuations in northern California and Oregon, and over 30 million people living in the western U.S. have been placed under excessive heat warnings, according to The Washington Post.

The Bootleg fire has burned over 153,000 acres in southwest Oregon on Monday and 0% is contained as of Sunday, according to the Incident Information System.

“The fire behavior we are seeing on the Bootleg Fire is among the most extreme you can find and firefighters are seeing conditions they have never seen before,” Al Lawson, an incident commander for the fire, said in a statement.

The Klamath County Sheriff’s Office has begun issuing arrests and citations to keep people out of the fire area, according to the statement.

The fire‘s conditions continue to worsen, forcing firefighters to evacuate and stop working, and causing California officials to ask citizens to reduce their power consumption due to fallen power lines, according to the Washington Post.

Two firefighters died in the Cedar Basin fire in Arizona on Saturday when their aircraft crashed during a reconnaissance mission, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) said in a statement.

“Our hearts and most sincere condolences are with the families, friends and colleagues of both individuals lost in this tragic accident,” BLM Arizona State Director Raymond Suazo said in the statement.

“This reminds us of the inherent risks involved in wildland firefighting and the gratitude we owe to the courageous and committed men and women who serve willingly to protect lives, communities and natural resources,” Suazo said.

The Cedar Basin fire has burned 714 acres with 0% containment as of Sunday, according to BLM.

The Dry Gulch Fire in Washington burned over 46,000 acres and is 20% contained, as the region witnessed historic temperatures and dry weather, according to the Washington state Department of National Resources.

Fires in Idaho have continued to burn leading to Idaho Gov. Brad Little to issue an emergency on Friday, according to a press release.

Northern Idaho has seen numerous fires caused by dry lightning events and conditions are expected to worsen, the press release said.

“Wildfire is presenting an imminent threat to life, property, and the environment, and we need all hands on deck. I appreciate our firefighters and fire managers for working so hard under such challenging conditions, and I am grateful that our guardsmen are able to step in once again to support Idaho communities,” Little said.

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