Weekend of fear looms for Californians in face of wildfires

GREENVILLE, Calif. (AP) – Fueled by strong winds and bone-dry vegetation, California’s Dixie Fire has grown to become the largest single wildfire in state history.

People living in the scenic forestlands of Northern California are facing a weekend of fear as it threatens to reduce thousands of homes to ashes.

Cooler overnight temperatures and higher humidity slowed the spread of the fire, however calmer winds were expected Saturday, with temperatures topping 90 degrees Fahrenheit instead of the 40-mph gusts and triple-digit highs recorded earlier in the week.

Smoke from the fires blanketed Northern California and western Nevada, causing air quality to deteriorate to very unhealthy and, at times, hazardous levels.