Wildfires rage in California as heat wave lingers across U.S. West


Sept 7 (Reuters) - Three large wildfires continued to burn in California as a record-breaking heat wave was set to linger across large swaths of the western United States on Monday.

The Creek Fire, which has engulfed the Fresno area in central California and caused the emergency evacuation over the weekend of more than 200 people vacationing at a popular reservoir, was still 0% contained as of early Monday morning, fire officials said.

The blaze continued to grow under "extreme weather conditions" to devour nearly 79,000 acres of land while a cause remained under investigation, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CalFire) said in a statement.

Officials in Madera County issued evacuation orders and urged residents to leave if they felt unsafe.

A fire in San Bernardino County, southeast of Los Angeles, that officials said was caused by a pyrotechnic device used during a gender reveal party, kept burning through the night, and was 7% contained as of Monday morning.

East of San Diego in southern California, nearly 400 firefighters battled the Valley Fire, which burned more than 10,000 acres in Cleveland National Forest.

Video shared on social media showed firefighters dousing the flames, the air thick with ash and fire embers.

The blaze was at only 1% containment as officials issued more evacuation orders on Monday morning and announced the deployment of military aircraft to help fight the rapidly spreading flames.

Late on Sunday, California Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency in Fresno, Madera, Mariposa, San Bernardino and San Diego counties due to the wildfires. (

Reporting by Maria Caspani in New York, Editing by Steve Orlofsky)