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United States

31 Aug 2021

Residents and Tourists Evacuate Lake Tahoe as Fire Rages

The Index Today

Communities near Lake Tahoe were evacuated as a 2-week fire grew closer to the popular tourist destination on Tuesday. The fire has spread through the parched forests of the Sierra Nevada Mountains and threatens to cause further damage in the region.

The U.S Forest Service has been busy conducting evacuations in towns around the south of the lake. It has further announced it will be closing down all 18 national forests in the state to prevent fires amid the fire season. The shutting down of the forests will occur for 17 days, starting from Wednesday.

Last September saw a similar closure of national forests as dangerous fire conditions grew rapidly. The agency has limited resources to combat forest fires raging on a much larger scale. Over 1.7 million acres of land have been blackened by forest fires alone this season.

The blaze near Lake Tahoe has spread over 177,000 acres since it started on August 14th. Firefighters have been working to contain the fire but with little success. The regions drought infested trees and upward slopes have played a major role in fanning the flames of almost 10,000 acres.

Evacuation orders have been put out for all surrounding areas including a part of El Dorado country which is in close proximity to the California-Nevada border. The region is a popular hotspot for camping, swimming, water sports, and boating.

All of South of Lake Tahoe was ordered to evacuate, a region home to almost 22,000 residents. Local jails were emptied and responders went door-to-door to ask people to leave immediately. The fire has so far destroyed around 472 homes and public buildings, with minimum casualties.

©Photo: Noah Berger/AP

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