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Cranston Fire in Idyllwild area grows to 7500 acres
27 July 2018, 04:26 | Jodi Jackson
Deadly Calif. wildfire 'taking down everything in its path,' spawning 'firenadoes'SHARE:sharetweetshareemail
Flames erupted Thursday afternoon near Pinyon Pines in Riverside County as another fire continued to devastate the Idyllwild area about 23 miles west, authorities said.
The Ribbon Fire broke out near Highway 74 and Ribbonwood Drive sometime before 11:45 a.m. Thursday, according to CAL Fire.
The entire town of Idyllwild along with several nearby communities are under mandatory evacuation orders. "There have been some injuries to civilians and firefighters", California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection spokesman Scott McLean told the newspaper.
Gov. Jerry Brown has declared states of emergency for the three largest fires, authorizing the state to rally resources to local governments, the AP writes.
Journalists at the Record Searchlight newspaper tweeted about continuing to report on the fire without electricity in their newsroom, and a reporter at KHSL-TV wrote on Twitter that the station's Redding reporters were "running home to gather their things".
The 43,300-acre (17,500-hectare) Ferguson Fire has forced Yosemite National Park to close a visitor hub as it pours thick black smoke into the valley 170 miles (275 km) east of San Francisco.
The fire's growth forced Old Shasta residents to evacuate on Thursday morning.
The fire was the largest of at least five that police believe were purposely set Wednesday by a man whose auto was reportedly spotted at the starting point of the blaze in Riverside County, officials said.
Some residents drove to hotels or the homes of family members in safer parts of California, while other evacuees poured into a shelter just outside of town.
The fire quickly grew to 800 acres and growing, officials said.
Firefighters from the USFS San Bernardino National Forest, Riverside County Fire Department of Cal Fire, and several local public safety agencies responded to a series of wildland fires on Wednesday. The closure was heartbreaking for travellers, many of whom mapped out their trips months in advance to hike and climb amid the spectacular views of cascading waterfalls and sheer rock faces.
But officials with the park said that Yosemite wasn't in imminent danger.
Yosemite Valley will be closed until at least Sunday, along with a winding, mountainous, 20-mile (32-kilometer) stretch of California's State Route 41 that leads into the area, Gediman said. Cal Fire says the Carr Fire is just 6 percent contained.