California wildfires some of largest in state history

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — More than 12,000 firefighters aided by helicopters and air tankers on Friday battled wildfires throughout California as reinforcements began to arrive.

Three groups of fires, called complexes, burning north, east and south of San Francisco, have together scorched 991 square miles, destroyed more than 500 structures and killed five people.

At least 100,000 people are under evacuation orders. Gov. Gavin Newsom says the blazes are taxing the California’s firefighting capacity but assistance from 10 states is beginning to arrive.

With firefighting resources tight, homes in remote, hard-to-get-to places burned unattended.

CalFire Chief Mark Brunton pleaded with residents to quit battling fires on their own, saying that just causes more problems for the professionals.

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