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California wildfire scorches wine country as death toll rises

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California wildfire scorches wine country as death toll risesCalifornia wildfire scorches wine country as death toll rises

The death toll continues to climb from devastating wildfires in California wine country. A man who was evacuated on Sunday with severe burns has died, marking the fourth fatality from the so-called Zogg Fire, officials confirmed on Wednesday.

The Zogg Fire, which started on Sunday and is burning in Shasta and Tehama counties, has scorched more than 51,000 acres. The blaze is 7% contained as of Wednesday afternoon, according to Cal Fire officials.

Nearly 150 structures have been destroyed by the fire, officials said. According to posts on social media, a number of the structures were located in the towns of Igo and Ono, CBS San Francisco Bay Area reported.

Meanwhile, the Glass Fire has charred more than 48,000 acres in Napa and Sonoma counties since it sparked early Sunday morning, Cal Fire reported. The blaze is only 2% contained.

In Napa, crews are lighting backfires to help stop the flames from causing more devastation. Some wineries are now barely recognizable, and more than 60 structures have been damaged or destroyed, including several homes.

“There were fires on both sides of my property,” said resident Sean Maher.

Not only did Maher lose his home in the town of Saint Helena, but his brother and father lost their homes too.

When asked what the conversation was with his father, Maher responded, “We both cried. A lot of great memories, so it’s tough.”

At least 30 people have lost their lives to wildfires in California since August, according to figures from Cal Fire. Fires have also destroyed 26 times more land in the state this year than last.  

President Trump blames California’s most destructive wildfire season on the state’s poor management of its 33 million acres of forests. But the state only owns 3%, and the federal government owns nearly 58%, according to the California Governor’s Office.

Regardless, scientists say climate change is drying out vegetation too fast for modern tools and the firefighters that use them to keep up.

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