Ponderosa Fire Destroys 10 Homes; Damages 5 Others

OROVILLE (CBS SF) — A wildfire raging out of control 16 miles east of Oroville has grown to 2,500 acres, burned 10 homes, damaged five others and forced evacuations in the community of Feather Falls, officials said early Wednesday.

Cal Fire said wind-whipped wildfire had grown to 2,500 acres overnight with no containment. By 9 a.m., 10 homes and 20 outbuildings had been destroyed with five homes and 10 other outbuildings damaged.

The National Weather Service said temperatures were expected to hover around 100 degrees in the fire area on Wednesday with 6 mph winds and 24 percent humidity.

The Ponderosa Fire was first spotted at 1:16 p.m. Tuesday near Lumpkin Road in an area east of Lake Oroville.

The blaze spread very quickly in the tinder-dry brush and was fanned by strong canyon winds. An aggressive response was mounted but not before it began to burn buildings and forced residents from their homes along Lumpkin Road.

Cal Fire said the blaze was threatening 800 structures and was continuing to grow. More than 900 firefighters were battling the blaze aided air tankers.

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