'More work to be done' in stomping out California's Oak Fire burning near Yosemite, officials warn
At least 55 structures, including 25 homes, have been destroyed by the Oak Fire burning in California
MARIPOSA COUNTY, Calif. – Crews have made further progress in containing and extinguishing California's Oak Fire burning outside Yosemite National Park, but officials warn "there is more work to be done."
CAL FIRE said crews have been able to hold and improve the fire line in the Mariposa Pines area, and more evacuation orders were reduced to fire advisements on Tuesday afternoon.
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As of Friday morning, the Oak Fire has burned nearly 20,000 acres of land and containment levels rose to 42%.
It's still unknown what sparked the blaze, and the cause remains under investigation.
The Oak Fire forced thousands of residents from their homes while the flames scorched the landscape, and at least 135 structures were destroyed.
That number of destroyed structures includes at least 25 homes.
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About 3,000 fire personnel have been working to extinguish the Oak Fire, which broke out Friday near Midpines, including 302 fire engines, 82 bulldozers and two dozen helicopters that have dropped hundreds of thousands of gallons of water on the flames in an attempt to stop the fire's spread.
On Tuesday, FOX Weather correspondent Max Gorden said that since the Oak Fire is the largest fire burning in the Golden State, it's getting a lot of attention.
"This is the number one priority within California. So we get the full force of all the California resources and region resources," CAL FIRE battalion chief Jon Heggie told FOX Weather. "So we're having all the engine, all the hand crews, all the aircraft we need. It's nice. In years past, we've had fires up and down the state. And that competition for resources is challenging."
HOW THE LAY OF THE LAND AFFECTS WILDFIRE BEHAVIOR
Wildfire smoke moves into surrounding states
The majority of smoke from the wildfire continues to impact Midpines, Mariposa and Yosemite National Park, according to the Interagency Wildland Fire Air Quality Response Program.
Midpines and Mariposa can expect unhealthy to very unhealthy air quality levels.
Wildfire smoke also impacts locations farther north from the Oak Fire, including South Lake Tahoe to Reno, Nevada.
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Smoke is also being lifted into Northern California, Oregon and Washington, but most smoke will remain near where the Oak Fire is burning outside Yosemite National Park.
Typically, July through October is the state's busiest period for fire activity.
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