50 people trapped and at least one dead in California as wildfires tear through Utah, Oregon, Washington, and Colorado.
Helicopters attempted but failed to rescue hikers and campers trapped by blazes in the Sierra National Forest, California.
Fresno Fire Battalion Chief Tony Escobedo confirmed at least one death and said there may be more.
The fire department wrote on Twitter: “Rescue efforts were unsuccessful, military pilots tried valiantly to land but heavy smoke conditions prevented a safe approach.
“Another effort will be made shortly to evacuate the trapped people in Lake Edison and China Peak using night vision.”
The rescue attempt came as blazes ripped across the western part of the country, wiping out grasslands and forests and destroying homes, as strong winds and high temperatures made it difficult for firefighters to contain and stop the fire from spreading.
14,100 firemen were battling 24 different California fires that destroyed already two million acres.
A small Washington town of 300 people saw 80 percent of homes ruined. In Idaho and Oregon, blazes shut off the electricity.
California Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency as multiple counties battle wildfires.
The El Dorado wildfire in southern California was sparked on Saturday by a gender reveal party after the pyrotechnical smoke device sent sparks into a dry brush.
According to reports, the fire has burned more than 7,000 acres and 527 people are trying to stop the blaze’s progress.
A spokesperson for the department, Bennet Milloy, said to Daily Mail that the people hosting the party were still there when firemen arrived.
The town of Malden in Washington state was almost entirely wiped out.
Larry Frick from Malden told KXLY that she spent three hours trying to save his home. “It’s gone,” he messaged his sibling. “The entire town is gone. Everything from here to Pine City is gone. The scariest time of my life.”
Wildfires in Washington had spread to Idaho.
In addition to the misery, residents in Idaho, Washington, and Oregon were without electricity as strong winds snapped powerlines.
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