2 dead in Mill Fire as California wildfires grow and evacuations are ordered

Sep 4, 2022, 6:50 PM
Firefighters survey homes on Wakefield Avenue destroyed by the Mill Fire on Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022...
Firefighters survey homes on Wakefield Avenue destroyed by the Mill Fire on Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022, in Weed, Calif. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
(AP Photo/Noah Berger)

(CNN) — As the West continues to roast in dangerous heat, two Northern California wildfires are growing and some residents have been told to leave, officials say.


The Mill Fire in Siskiyou County almost doubled in size since Friday and has burned through an estimated 4,254 acres with 25% containment, Cal Fire said in an update Sunday morning.

Two people are dead as a result of the Mill Fire in Weed, California, Siskiyou County Sheriff Jeremiah LaRue said during a community meeting Sunday afternoon.

LaRue did not identify the people who died or the circumstances surrounding their deaths.

The blaze destroyed 50 structures as it spread, and forced the evacuation of an estimated 1,000 people, officials said.

The cause of the fire, which began Friday, remains under investigation and evacuation orders for Weed, Lake Shastina and Edgewood, are in place.

“This incident is rapidly changing and our staff and partners are doing everything they can to get everyone to safety,” the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office said Saturday.

Officials in Siskiyou County are also battling the Mountain Fire, which had grown to cover 8,460 acres with 10% containment as of Sunday afternoon, Cal Fire said.

“Winds on the Mountain Fire will be stronger on the ridges, providing an opportunity for mid- to long-range spotting. Weather continues to be hot and dry with poor overnight relative humidity recoveries,” the Cal Fire Siskiyou Unit said Sunday.

The fire has prompted the evacuation of more than 300 people. Its cause is not yet known, according to Cal Fire.

Cal Fire Battalion Chief Jon Heggie told CNN Sunday afternoon fire conditions in California are “extremely dangerous,” given the state’s extended drought.

“What that left us with was a huge amount of dead fuel throughout California. So, all these fires now have just receptive fuel beds to burn and now when anything gets started it has that potential for exponential growth in a short period of time,” Heggie said. “There’s such a large amount of dead fuel, you know, basically from San Diego all the way to the Oregon border,” he said.

He warned the public to be careful engaging in any activities which could potentially start a fire.

On Friday, Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency for Siskiyou County to “support the response to the rapidly-spreading Mill Fire,” his office said.

Meanwhile, in Southern California, the Route Fire in Los Angeles County was at 5,208 acres Saturday evening with 91% containment, according to an update from Cal Fire Sunday morning.

Issuing what it said was its “final update” on the incident Saturday evening, the Los Angeles County Fire department said the Route Fire had destroyed two structures and threatened hundreds more.

“Dozers, hand crews and engines made great progress today further building containment line around the fire perimeter and will continue overnight. Over the next three days, the Route Fire will continue to be patrolled and monitored,” the fire department said.

It said the fire was expected to be fully contained by Wednesday.

Today’s Top Stories


Three Fresh Carnitas Tacos on a plate wth lime and radish...
Casey Barber, CNN

Make every day National Taco Day with these tasty recipes

October 4 is National Taco Day, but any day in October (or any month, really) is a worthwhile opportunity to dive into the diverse world of tacos.
1 day ago
Russian President Vladimir Putin (C) with Ukrainian separatist regional leaders Vladimir Saldo (L),...
Olga Voitovych and Joshua Berlinger, CNN

Russian Parliament begins process to rubber-stamp annexations as Moscow struggles to define borders

Despite there being no set boundaries, Russia's parliament began the process of approving Vladmir Putin's decision to annex part of Ukraine.
1 day ago
FILE - This photo provided by the North Korean government shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un del...
Yoonjung Seo, Emiko Jozuka, Junko Ogura, Brad Lendon and Simone McCarthy, CNN

Japan issues rare alert as North Korea fires missile without warning over main island

The US Indo-Pacific Command also released a statement saying American commitments to the defense of Japan and South Korea "remain ironclad."
1 day ago
FORT MYERS BEACH, FLORIDA - OCTOBER 02:   In this aerial view,  destruction left in the wake of Hur...
Nouran Salahieh, CNN

Florida faces an ’emotional roller coaster’ as search for Hurricane Ian survivors continues

Many of the Ian-related deaths -- 42 -- have been reported in southwestern Florida's Lee County, which includes Fort Myers and Sanibel Island.
2 days ago
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 17: Sacheen Littlefeather on stage at AMPAS Presents An Evening...
Toyin Owoseje, CNN

Sacheen Littlefeather, Native American activist and actress, dead at 75

In August, the Academy formally apologized to Littlefeather for the mistreatment she experienced during her speech and in the years that followed.
2 days ago
Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida said that he will vote against any potential congressional d...
Devan Cole, CNN

Rubio vows to oppose potential Hurricane Ian aid package if lawmakers ‘load it up with stuff that’s unrelated to the storm’

Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida said he will vote against any potential congressional disaster aid for victims of Hurricane Ian if lawmakers "load it up with stuff that's unrelated to the storm."
3 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Young woman receiving laser treatment...
Form Derm Spa

How facial plastic surgery and skincare are joining forces

Facial plastic surgery is not only about looking good but about feeling good too. The medical team at Form Spa are trained to help you reach your aesthetic outcomes through surgery and through skincare and dermatology, too.
large group of friends tohether in a park having fun...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

What differentiates BYU’s MBA program from other MBA programs

Commitment to service is at the heart of BYU’s MBA program, which makes it stand out among other MBA programs across the country.
a worker with a drill in an orange helmet installs a door in the house...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

Home improvement tip: Increase the value of your home by weatherproofing doors

Make sure your home is comfortable before the winter! Seasonal maintenance keeps your home up to date. Read our tips on weatherproofing doors.
Curb Appeal...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

How to have the best of both worlds for your house | Home security and curb appeal

Protect your home and improve its curb appeal with the latest security solutions like beautiful garage doors and increased security systems.
A paper reading IRS, internal revenue service is pictured...
Jordan Wilcox

The best strategies for dealing with IRS tax harassment | You have options!

Learn how to deal with IRS tax harassment. This guide will teach you how to stop IRS phone calls and letters, and how to handle an IRS audit.
spend a day at Bear Lake...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

You’ll love spending the day at Bear Lake | How to spend a day at Bear Lake

Bear Lake is a place that needs to be experienced. Spend a day at Bear Lake.
2 dead in Mill Fire as California wildfires grow and evacuations are ordered