Updated Aug 3, 2022 - Science
In photos: McKinney Fire in California burns more than 57,500 acres amid perilous conditions
California's McKinney Fire, located near the Oregon border, has burned nearly 57,500 acres of land and conditions this week are ripe for continued fire spread.
Why it matters: The McKinney Fire is the state's largest wildfire so far this year and has prompted evacuation orders and a state of emergency declaration in California's Siskiyou County.
- On Tuesday, the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office announced that two people were found dead in separate homes within the fire's perimeter, bringing the total number of fatalities so far up to at least four.
- Two people were discovered dead on Sunday in a vehicle that had been burned in the fire's path, the Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office wrote in a Facebook post Monday morning.
The big picture: As of Wednesday morning, the fire had grown to 57,519 acres and remained 0% contained, according to an update from Cal Fire.
- Areas of Northern California where the fire is burning were also under a red flag warning through Tuesday evening due to anticipated thunderstorms that will bring "abundant lightning" and "gusty thunderstorm winds," the National Weather Service said on Monday.
- These storms may also cause sudden, gusty winds that may pose a danger to firefighters, the NWS warned.
Our thought bubble, via Axios' Andrew Freedman: Climate change is increasing extreme fire weather days in the West, and is leading to larger wildfires throughout the region as well.
- Nine of California's top 10 largest wildfires have occurred since 2010.
- One study published last year found that wildfires in the West nearly doubled the area burned between the 1984 to 2000 period when compared to 2001 to 2018, a trend it attributed mainly to human-caused global warming.
Editor's note: This story has been updated with additional details.