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California Wildfire Threatens 1,000 Homes

Hundreds of firefighters on Sunday battled a wildfire that threatened 1,000 homes north of Lake Isabella, Calif.

The Kern County Sheriff's Office ordered people on Saturday to evacuate homes nearest to the fire, which began Friday and by Sunday had spread to 2,000 acres. Several National Forest roads were also shut down.

The area is about 40 miles northeast of Bakersfield.

A Red Cross shelter in Lake Isabella housed 33 evacuees on Saturday night, according to the organization.

Firefighters worked to squelch the flames from the air, but a prolonged drought provided dry fuel for the fire, which was also pushed by heavy winds, according to the Kern County Fire Department. Late Sunday the fire was still only 10 percent contained, officials said.

Nearly, 1,200 personnel were assigned to the fire in the Sequoia National Forest.

Bakersfield is under an air quality alert, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Officials warned nearby residents who did not live in evacuation areas to stay indoors to avoid the heavy cloud of smoke.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

— Elisha Fieldstadt