Thousands Of People Must Evacuate As Inferno Engulfs Yosemite

Fire In Yosemite

A wildfire that sparked Friday afternoon in Mariposa County has forced immediate evacuations for nearby residents and is threatening thousands of homes, according to officials.

The Oak fire has grown to be the largest for this year’s wildfire season in California. The Oak Fire is now 30 miles away from Yosemite Valley, and drivers will have to go through Highway 120 at this time. The fire may slow down if it hits the burn scar caused by the Ferguson Fire, which left two firefighters dead and injured 19 others.

The Oak Fire has scorched 96,901 acres and destroyed multiple structures. Crews from the Cosumnes Fire Department, Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District, Modesto, Stanislaus Consolidated, and Turlock are all helping to contain the fire.

The Oak Fire started on Friday afternoon near Highway 140 and Carstens Road by the community of Midpines and has since spread to at least 11,900 acres. At least ten structures have been destroyed, and five have been damaged, and another 2,000 structures are currently being threatened.

The Fire has led to a state of emergency in Mariposa County.  Law enforcement officials there have been able to help people without cars trapped in the evacuation zone.

The fire is about 30 miles away from Yosemite Valley, crews have managed to protect the cherished sequoias in Mariposa Grove from getting burned so far.

The Mariposa County Fair Grounds and Mariposa Elementary School are both places where animals are being dropped off for residents with no where to keep them.

**This story is still developing.

For more on this story, please consider these sources:

  1. Thousands ordered to flee California wildfire near Yosemite  ABC News
  2. Oak Fire: Fast-moving flames force more Mariposa County residents to evacuate  KCRA Sacramento
  3. Oak Fire rages near Yosemite National Park  Associated Press
  4. Oak Fire explodes in size, forces evacuations, creates pyro-cloud  SFGATE
  5. Oak Fire Remains Active Overnight and Destroys Structures |  Sierra News Online
  6. View Full Coverage on Google News
John Nightbridge is a veteran reporter, researcher, and economic policy major from UCLA. Passionate about world issues and potential ways to solve them is a significant focus of his work. Writing freelance and reading the news are John's passions at work. Outside of work, it's all about sky diving, surfing, and stock market modeling.