California wildfires: Death toll to 7 as rapid spread continues

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Combined, they form the biggest blaze that California firefighters are now battling.

The Lake County Sheriff's Office says deputies on Saturday found the men watering a marijuana crop about 20 yards (18 meters) from the fire line.

The president was seemingly echoing some language from a longstanding argument between California's farmers and environmentalists over how the state's water resources should best be shared.

"California wildfires are being magnified & made so much worse by the bad environmental laws which aren't allowing massive amount of readily available water to be properly utilized. Must also tree clear to stop fire spreading!" Henri Grissino-Mayer, a geography professor at the University of Tennessee, said he had "no clue" what Trump was referring to in his tweet.

"Ridiculous. It's true that water is directed to the coastal cities for a constant water supply but all such water is used by the coastal communities".

Officials from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CalFire) and the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, Idaho, stressed that wild-land blazes are battled primarily by crews hacking away at dry brush with hand tools and bulldozers, not with water.

According to Daniel Ramey, the PIO for Peardale Chicago Park Fire, "The team has seen a large amount of wildlife in the area - elks, coyotes, rabbits, deer, eagles etc".

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"Battling these relentless fires requires a Herculean effort", California Gov.

The White House approved a disaster declaration for Shasta County over the weekend following requests from California's State Governor Jerry Brown, allowing affected residents to apply for federal assistance including emergency housing.

"The Ranch Fire is still a very, very dynamic and active fire, but with the River Fire wrapping up, we've begun to move more aircraft over there and we are having some successes with that", said Blankenheim, explaining that one of Cal Fire's main priorities is to keep the bottom of the Ranch Fire from heading down the hill toward the communities of Lucerne, Nice and Clearlake Oaks in Lake County.

As of Sunday morning, the Carr Fire had destroyed more than 1,600 buildings and consumed more than 154,000 acres.

Firefighters had managed to contain 43 percent of the Carr blaze by late Sunday, and authorities were letting some evacuees return.

As of Monday afternoon, the Mendocino complex had destroyed a total of 87 residences and 82 other structures. The current spate of wildfires happens to be within range of large Northern California lakes and the state's biggest river, McLean said.

So far this year, US fires have burned 5 million acres (2 million hectares), much more than the 10-year average, according to the National Interagency Fire Center. "These hazards, along with extreme fire behavior and frequent weather changes, have made this an extremely hard fire fight", according to the NPS statement. But the heat forced many crews to drop back to safety zones in July and helplessly watch fires continue to rapidly expand. That was only about 10 percent higher than that the 3,440 last year and the 3,405-acre average for the last 5 years.

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