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California wildfire edges in on Yosemite National Park


USA

California wildfire edges in on Yosemite National Park

Reduced to smoke and ash, 5,000 hectares has been charred in some of the worst wild fires in Californian history.

More than 2,700 firefighters have been called in to fight the blaze which is edging in on Yosemite National Park.

Dousing it with gallons of retardant has had little affect on the flames which have a tendency to burn the tops of trees spreading rapidly across forested areas.

Ashley Taylor, US Forest Service spokeswoman explains how their efforts are being hampered: “We have some major obstacles we’re still facing,” she said. One being inaccessible steep terrain, dry vegetation and just extreme fire activity.”

Authorities have only managed to contain 5 percent of the Rim fire which began last Saturday. Energy and water supplies in San Francisco were threatened as the blaze moved in on reservoirs and power lines. A state of emergency was declared on Saturday and many residents have evacuated their homes in the affected areas.

Access to Yosemite, which attracted 4 million visitors last year, was closed along Highway 120 as firefighters turned their efforts to redirecting the fires away from buildings and campgrounds.

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