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If the Mendocino Complex Fire continues to grow, it could become the largest wildfire the state has seen in nine decades, surpassing the Thomas Fire, which burned through almost 282,000 acres of land in December 2017 in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties.

It is the largest of eight major fires burning out of control across California, prompting U.S. President Donald Trump to declare a "major disaster" in the state.

Both areas remained under a "red flag warning" issued by the National Weather Service for strong winds, low relative humidity and temperatures topping 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius), all conditions that can drive the growth of wildfires.

NOAH BERGER via Getty Images Battalion Chief Matt Sully directs operations on the Ranch Fire, part of the Mendocino Complex Fire, burning near Clearlake Oaks on Sunday.

"California wildfires are being magnified & made so much worse by the bad environmental laws which aren't allowing massive amount of readily available water to be properly utilized", he said.

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The Carr Fire - which has torched 163,207 acres (66,047.5 hectares) in the scenic Shasta-Trinity region north of Sacramento since breaking out on July 23 - was 45 percent contained. The Ranch Fire, which has burned over 225,000 acres, sit at only 21 percent contained.

About two-thirds of the worldwide reinforcements in Redding were sent to the Mendocino Complex Fires, U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman Kerry Greene said, and the remaining third stayed nearby to fight the Carr Fire. The two fires, which have threatened more than 9,000 structures, have not merged, but officials are counting them as one.

A brand new blaze called the Holy Fire was ignited on Monday in Orange County, quickly expanding to more than 1,200 acres.

As of Monday morning, the blaze has consumed 273,664 acres and destroyed 75 homes, as well as 68 other structures, according to Cal Fire, the California agency responsible for fire protection.

Nationwide on wildfires 558 hand crews, 186 helicopters, and 1,907 fire engines are assigned on wildfires, for a total 28,234 personnel including overhead and other firefighting resources. Mandatory evacuations are still in place for areas in Lake, Colusa, and Mendocino County.

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Woodward said the crew will be traveling to Northern California sometime this week.

With several major wildfires burning across California, officials suggested they would decide where to deploy the extra firefighters once they arrived.

Trump doubled-down on his earlier comments in a second tweet on Monday in which he accused the state "foolishly" diverting river water into the ocean, which environmental experts say is not accurate. "We must be able to actively manage our forests and not face frivolous litigation when we try to remove these fuels".

Hundreds of colleagues, family and friends attended a memorial service Saturday in Fresno for National Forest Service Capt. Brian Hughes.

But with the additional aircraft freed from the River Fire, Blankenheim said "that area is starting to look up, and we're starting to feel like we're getting ahead of the game".

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According to the LA Times and CalFire, however, the water used for irrigation in Central Valley farms isn't the water that would be used for fighting fires outside of Redding.


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