Flames racing across rough terrain in Northern California destroyed several homes on Saturday as the largest wildfire in the state intensified and scores of other wildfires struck the western United States.
The Dixie fire, which began on July 14, has already razed more than a dozen houses and other structures to the ground when it burst through the tiny village of Indian Falls after dark.
An updated damage estimate was not immediately available, although fire officials said the fire had charred more than 181,000 acres (73,200 ha) in Plumas and Butte counties and was contained 20%.
The fire burned in a remote area with limited access, making it difficult for firefighters to act as it pushed eastward, fire officials said.
This prompted evacuation orders in several small towns and along the western shore of Lake Almanor, a popular holiday destination.
Heavy smoke from the Dixie’s fire impaired visibility and could occasionally use ground aircraft to support firefighters.
More than 85 major wildfires have burned across the country, most of them in the western states, and have burned over 1.4 million acres (2,135 square miles, or over 553,000 hectares).