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Photo: Jane Tyska/Digital First Media/East Bay Times via Getty Images

A wave of cooler temperatures and humidity is quelling the wildfires that spread across California in recent weeks, allowing thousands of evacuated residents to return to their homes, AP reports.

The big picture: At least seven people have died as hundred of wildfires burned 2,000 square miles. Approximately 170,000 residents were facing evacuation orders at the fires' peak.

  • Evacuation orders have been specifically lifted for approximately 50,000 residents in the San Francisco Bay Area and wine country, AP notes.
  • Electricity and water is still damaged in some areas, preventing safe homecomings for some.
  • Firefighting crews have been stretched thin by the destruction, resulting in 200 active duty U.S. troops being mobilized in the state.

Go deeper

Updated Oct 6, 2020 - Science

August Complex Fire burns 1 million acres in California

Satellite imagery of the August Complex Fire near Big Signal Peak in Mendocino National Forest, California. Photo: Maxar Technologies via Getty Images

A massive wildfire in the Coast Range of California, between San Francisco and the Oregon border, has burned over 1 million acres, Cal Fire said on Monday.

The big picture: The August Complex Fire, which merged from 37 different wildfires in the Mendocino National Forest, has killed one person and destroyed 159 structures as it burned across 1,002,097 acres, per Cal Fire. It was at 54% containment as of Monday.

Updated 14 hours ago - Technology

From Malcolm X to "Free Britney," new media shapes the justice system

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

True crime documentaries, podcasts and social media campaigns are bringing new attention to real-world legal proceedings — and are often affecting the outcome.

Why it matters: New media platforms can instantly put a national spotlight on cases that have long been forgotten or buried under red tape.

Updated 16 hours ago - Health

The next big bottleneck in the global vaccination effort

Illustration: Rae Cook/Axios

The world still needs more coronavirus vaccines, but an additional bottleneck has emerged in many low-income countries: They need help getting shots in arms.

Why it matters: Increasing vaccination rates across the world is both a humanitarian necessity and the best way to prevent dangerous new variants from emerging, but it increasingly requires complex problem-solving.