McKinney Fire in N. Calif. leaves two dead

Flames from the McKinney Fire burn beyond firefighters in Klamath National Forest, Calif., on Sunday, July 31, 2022. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

Flames from the McKinney Fire burn beyond firefighters in Klamath National Forest, Calif., on Sunday, July 31, 2022. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 6:35 PM PT – Monday, August 1, 2022

Two people are dead and thousands more evacuated as firefighters battle California’s largest fire this season. Governor Gavin Newsom (D) declared a state of emergency Saturday as the McKinney Fire burning near the California-Oregon border continued to rage out of control. More than 55,000 acres have been charred since the flames broke out Friday. Crews found the bodies of two people in a burned-out vehicle Sunday morning.

As the weekend ended, the blaze was zero percent contained. Firefighters faced a long battle ahead as lightning and thunderstorms complicated efforts. Additionally, the flames raced through dry vegetation. Heavy smoke over the fire helped slow its growth Sunday, but also kept firefighting aircraft grounded. That’s according to the US Forest Service in a Sunday night update.

“These conditions can be extremely dangerous for firefighters as winds can be erratic and extremely strong causing fire to spread in any direction,” forest service officials said in a news release.

According to CNN meteorologist Haley Brink, more than 2 million people are under red flag warnings in parts of Northern California, Central Oregon, Eastern Washington, Montana, Eastern Wyoming, Western South Dakota and Northwestern Nebraska. More than 650 firefighters are on the scene and battling the blaze.

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