Bulldozer operator killed, firefighters injured battling fierce Northern California fire

Firefighters discuss plans, while battling the Carr Fire in Shasta, California, on Thursday, July 26, 2018.

(Associated Press)

A bulldozer operator was killed and three firefighters were injured Thursday as they fought for an erratic and fast-moving wildfire in Northern California.

The so-called Carr Fire in Shasta County has destroyed dozens of homes and charred thousands of acres.

The fire is swallowed up by a privately hired bulldozer operator and his equipment, according to CalFire spokesman Scott McLean. The worker’s body was found late Thursday.

#CarrFire [update] Unified Incident Commander Chef Brett Gouvea gives an explanation to the Carr Fire.

— CAL FIRE PIO (@CALFIRE_PIO) July 27, 2018

The bulldozer operator working on an active portion of the fire, Unified Incident Commander Chef Brett Gouvea said.

Three firefighters, along with an unknown number of civilians also suffered burns, the official said.

The Carr Fire was just one of the many forest fires that have sent firefighters to all corners of the state in the midst of an oppressive heat wave. The blaze is burning in the vicinity of Redding, a city of about 92,000 people about 100 miles south of the Oregon state line.

A historic school building burns as the Carr Fire tears through Shasta, California, July 26, 2018.

(Associated Press)

Gouvea said the fire was making a “significant push” in the north-western part of Redding.

The fire broke out Monday and has tripled in size overnight, is still 50 percent of day-to-day 45 square kilometers. The residents had little knowledge on how to evacuate, in what McLean described as a chaotic scene.

McLean says that the fire was “taking everything in its path.”

Strong wind drifted the walls of the flames in the historic Gold Rush-era town of Shasta, in which the national parks staff had the early morning to rescue historic artifacts of the museum as the blaze advanced.

California Gov. Jerry Brown has declared states of emergency for the state of the three biggest fires, the release of resources for local authorities.

Meanwhile, authorities in Southern California say they arrested Brandon McGlover, 32, Temecula, on arson charges in connection with five fires, including a blaze that was threatening approximately 600 homes in the San Jacinto Mountains east of Los Angeles.

The suspect was reportedly in the fire Wednesday in southwest Riverside County, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Fox News’ Dom Calicchio and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

Benjamin Brown is a reporter from Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @bdbrown473.

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