The Dixie Fire in Northern California, which erupted on July 13, has grown to become the country’s largest wildfire so far this year.
Dubbed the Dixie Fire, the massive fire has burned 432,813 acres of land and was only 35 per cent contained as of Friday, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.
Official data showed that the fire grew by around 100,000 acres in just 24 hours, reports Xinhua news agency.
The fire is also the third largest wildfire in California’s history, only behind 2020’s August Complex Fire and 2018’s Mendocino Complex Fire.
It was marked as the 11th largest wildfire in California’s history on Tuesday and exploded to become the sixth largest on Thursday.
The Dixie Fire, burning through multiple counties in Northern California, has destroyed at least 91 structures.
It has also led to the closure of the Lassen Volcanic National Park and the devastation of Greenville, a small mountain town home to around 1,000 residents around 230 km northeast of the state capital Sacramento.
Authorities in multiple Northern California counties have issued new mandatory evacuations and new warnings, urging residents in some communities near the fire zones to evacuate immediately.
Over 6,000 wildfires have burned more than an estimated 579,600 acres and damaged or destroyed at least 400 structures in California so far this year, according to the Cal Fire’s 2021 Incident Archive.
The state and most of the US West Coast are in the grip of a severe drought of historic proportions.
Nationwide, 100 large fires have burned 1,947,811 acres in 14 states, the US National Interagency Fire Centre said Thursday.