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Calmer weather returns to California wildfire zone

Posted: May 29, 2014 9:15 a.m.
Updated: May 29, 2014 9:15 a.m.
 

MARIPOSA, Calif. (AP) — Weather was expected to be friendlier for firefighters Thursday as they look to fully contain a Central California wildfire that led to the destruction of two homes.

Some 50 residents were allowed to return to their homes Wednesday night, two days after they were told to evacuate when the blaze broke out east of Lake McClure in Mariposa County, sheriff's officials said.

About 700 firefighters working in steep terrain had the blaze 40 percent contained late Wednesday.

The fire has led to five injuries, including a moderate cut from a chain saw sustained by an inmate who was aiding the effort. Four other firefighters suffered minor injuries. The fire destroyed two unoccupied homes.

Temperatures in the area on Wednesday dropped to the low 80s with winds at 19 mph, fire spokesman Dennis Mathisen said.

By Thursday, he expected the winds to drop with the temperatures in the high 70s. "Mother Nature's going to start cooperating with us," Mathisen said.

California has seen little rainfall this year and is in the midst of a drought. The nearby Sacramento Valley was under a red flag warning through Thursday night, with low humidity and dry winds creating a critical fire danger.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 

 

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