Detwiler Fire Near Yosemite National Park Doubles in Size to 70-Square Miles; Thousands Evacuated

A massive wildfire in Mariposa County nearly doubled in size overnight as flames destroyed structures, threatened power to Yosemite National Park and forced 4,000 people to flee their homes.

A firefighter sprays down flames as the Detwiler fire rages on near the town of Mariposa, California on July 18, 2017. (Credit: JOSH EDELSON/AFP/Getty Images)

The fast-growing Detwiler fire, which is burning west of Yosemite, exploded from 25,000 acres to 45,724 acres, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said Wednesday.

On Tuesday, Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency after the fire forced thousands to evacuate and damaged power, water and communication infrastructure.

The governor’s order sends additional equipment and fire crews to Mariposa County to help fight the blaze, which is only 7% contained. The declaration also accelerates emergency aid to those affected by the fire.

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