Thomas Fire California’s Biggest Ever

The Thomas fire in Southern California is officially the largest in the history of the state after burning through 273,400 acres, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and the Associated Press.

The AP notes:

The Thomas fire took only 2 weeks to burn its way into history books as unrelenting winds and parched weather turned everything in its path to tinder – including more than 700 homes.

The fire in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties had scorched 273,400 acres, or about 427 square miles of coastal foothills and national forest, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

That was 154 acres larger than California’s previous fire record holder – the 2003 Cedar fire in San Diego County that killed 15 people.

The Cedar fire had been recognized as the biggest California wildfire in terms of acreage since 1932. Some fires before that date undoubtedly were larger but records are unreliable, according to state fire officials.

The fire is now 65 percent contained. It is unlikely to expand. The Los Angeles Times notes: “Any new growth on the Thomas fire will probably be due to controlled burns by firefighters.”

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) declared at 6 a.m. on Dec. 23 that the Tomas fire …

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