Southern California 'Apple Fire' forces almost 8000 to evacuate

Taya Gray  The Desert Sun The Apple Fire continues to burn in the Banning bluff area of Riverside County on Saturday

Taya Gray The Desert Sun The Apple Fire continues to burn in the Banning bluff area of Riverside County on Saturday

Almost 8,000 residents of Riverside County in Southern California were forced to leave their homes on Saturday as a wildfire spread uncontained across more than 1,600 hectares, the county fire department said. Flames leapt along brushy ridge tops and came close to homes while some 375 firefighters attacked it from the ground and air, authorities said. But it remained 0 percent contained Saturday evening.

"Approximately 2,586 homes totaling approximately 7,800 people are under evacuation orders", the Riverside Fire Department tweeted Saturday evening.

Evacuation orders have been issued for north of Wilson St, east of Sunset Ave and west of Hathaway St., north of Cherry Valley, Potato Canyon and San Bernardino, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE).

Maryland extends unemployment benefits by 13 weeks
Congress has been negotiating another relief package, but those talks hit an impasse Wednesday, according to The Washington Post . More than 30.2 million people were receiving benefits for the week ended July 11, down 1.6 million from the previous week .

Firefighters are working in extreme heat, with temperatures reaching up to 103 degrees in Riverside and 104 degrees in San Bernardino, according to the National Weather Service.

"At this point we are establishing control lines, and we're expecting some containment by tomorrow morning", said CalFire division Chief Ty Davis. "The public and the residents can expect additional fire department resources in and out of the area". However, evacuations were quickly ordered by Friday night to the nearby cities of Banning and Beaumont, Calif.

The weather service said "dangerously hot conditions" were expected to continue into evening because of high pressure over the region.

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