California wildfires have destroyed 1,000 structures
Thousands of firefighters are making headway against the vast Thomas Fire burning in Southern California, expressing hope that conditions are becoming more favorable, CNN reports.
The blaze is larger than all of New York City and was about 20% contained as of Monday evening, according to the fire protection agency CAL FIRE.
The wind was cooperating with firefighters Monday and pushing the fire away from nearby communities, Santa Barbara County fire spokesman Mike Eliason told CNN. The breeze had also cleared the air somewhat, leading to improved visibility for fire crews.
"It's still not great. It's bad, but it's a better bad," Eliason said, warning that there was a fine line between winds helping firefighting efforts.
"You want the breeze to clear the air, but you don't want the breeze to fuel the fire," he said. "Hope springs eternal. Every day we're going to hope that this progressing and getting closer and closer of being put to bed. But right now we're going to need some rain and the long range forecast doesn't show that."
The Thomas Fire is only one of six major wildfires torching the state. In total, the fires have destroyed more than 1,000 structures since igniting last week.
The blazes vary in size. Together, they are larger than the areas of New York City and Boston combined, or bigger than the area of Singapore.