New wildfire rips through northern California

Dramatic moment wildfire explodes along a California freeway

A highway running the length of California remained closed for a fifth day Sunday near the OR border as a wildfire smothered rural forestlands in smoke and flame. There were some reports that homes had burned but he could only confirm that an outbuilding and two mixed-use commercial and residential buildings had been damaged.

16 new fires are burning in northern California.

More than 6,000 wildfires have hit the U.S. state of California this year, burning an area of 580,100 hectares (1,435,263 acres) and causing damages worth more than $2.56bn, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and the National Interagency Fire Center.

On Wednesday, flames raced across Interstate 5, chasing a number of truckers from their vehicles before flames engulfed their abandoned rigs, though no serious injuries were reported.

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The highway that traverses the West Coast from Mexico to Canada and serves as a main artery for commerce had been closed since Wednesday, forcing trucks and other traffic on smaller roads that has added 100 miles (160 kilometers) to their journeys.

Before the highway is reopened, authorities have to check the safety of the pavement and cut down burned trees next to the road - some of them 70 feet tall - that might be in danger of falling down. The truck stop's facilities were stretched to their limits, cashier Jacob Chapman said Thursday afternoon.

Shasta-Trinity National Forest lands, roads, and trails around the fire perimeter have been closed.

"It's been ridiculously congested".

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The AP noted that Cal Fire has requested additional funding in seven of the past 10 years, though the latest one has come earlier in the year than any previous requests.

"They had a lot of ground troops- they just didn't have many people to manage them, so our people were in charge of crews", he said.

It was largest fire in California state history, burning more than 459,100 acres.

Officials say the largest wildfire on record in California is expected to be fully contained by Sunday, more than six weeks after it started.

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The blaze comes as the area is already grappling with the destruction and trauma from the devastating Carr Fire, which burned over 1,000 homes and led to the deaths of eight people this summer.

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