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The Creek Fire jumps State Route 168 in Fresno County, California, on Tuesday. Photo: Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Pilots wearing night-vision goggles landed helicopters in California's burning Sierra National Forest to save 164 people trapped by flames and were working to rescue 17 others, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) said during a news conference Tuesday.

What's happening: Firefighters are battling more than two dozen major blazes, as PG&E cut power to 170,000 customers in a safety shutdown.

Catch up quick:

  • In the Los Padres National Forest on California's central coast, 14 firefighters and bulldozer operators became surrounded by flames at the Nacimiento Station, leaving one critically wounded and others with burns and smoke inhalation damage, AP reports.
  • The National Forest Service temporarily closed forests, trails and campgrounds across the state on Monday evening because of the wildfires, the Los Angeles Times reports. All in Southern California were closed. The agency closed eight more forests on Tuesday.
  • "Most of California remains under the threat of unprecedented and dangerous fire conditions with a combination of extreme heat, significant wind events, dry conditions, and firefighting resources that are stretched to the limit," the National Park Service said in a statement.
  • Huntington Lake volunteer fire chief Chris Donnelly told NBC News that the rapidly growing Creek Fire charred "at least two dozen homes" after sweeping the area Saturday night, when it trapped dozens of campers, who had to be evacuated by helicopter.
  • The Creek Fire has razed more than 143,900 acres and was not contained at all Tuesday night, per Cal Fire.
  • A "smoke generating pyrotechnic device, used during a gender reveal party" caused the El Dorado Fire in San Bernardino County, Cal Fire said. The fire has razed more than 10,500 acres and was 16% contained Tuesday.

The big picture: Newsom has declared a statewide emergency due to the widespread fires and extreme weather conditions. President Trump has issued a major disaster declaration for the state.

Go deeper: California wildfires raze a record 2 million acres

Editor's note: This article has been updated with more details on the fires and the weather and to include PG&E's announcement.

Go deeper

Over 300,000 Californians affected by PG&E blackouts

High tension towers in Los Angeles. Photo: Apu Gomes/AFP via Getty Images

Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) announced Sunday that it would begin power shut-offs for roughly 361,000 California customers due to dry weather that could risk wildfire spread.

Where it stands: Cal Fire identified two new fire incidents late on Sunday that have spread through 70 acres. Two other major fires in the state are 80% and 30% contained.

44 mins ago - Health

U.S. ahead of pace on vaccines

A health care worker administers a dose of the Moderna vaccine in Ruleville, Mississippi. Photo: Rory Doyle/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The U.S. is now vaccinating an average of 2 million people a day, up from 1.3 million in early February.

Why it matters: That puts us on track to hit President Biden's goal of 100 million doses a month ahead of schedule.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Harris breaks tie as Senate proceeds with lengthy debate on COVID relief bill

Photo: Oliver Contreras/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Senate on Thursday voted 51-50 — with Vice President Kamala Harris breaking the tie — to proceed to debate on President Biden's $1.9 trillion coronavirus rescue package, likely setting up a final vote this weekend.

The state of play: Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) is forcing the Senate clerk to read the entire 628-page bill on the floor, a procedural move that will likely add 10 hours to the 20 hours already allotted for debate.

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