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The Latest: New forest fires hit California, the burning of houses

GOLETA, California. – The Latest on the fires burning in the West (all times are local):

8:55 pm

Southern California firefighters take advantage of the calm conditions to attack of a small but destructive wildfire in the Santa Barbara County community of Goleta, one of the many conflagrations to burn in the hot and dry West.

Fire Capt. Dave Zaniboni says there is no wind Saturday morning — a much different situation than Friday night when the fire broke out and was spread wildly by 50 mph (80 km / h) gusts.

The blaze consumed an estimated 20 structures, including homes and other buildings.

Many of the structures continue to burn but Zaniboni says the forward spread of the fire is stopped. It is estimated at 100 acres (40.5 ha) or less.

The cause of the fire is still unknown. It erupted in the middle of a triple digit heat wave has sent humidity plunging, so the conditions are ripe for fires.

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11:56 pm

Forest fires that have destroyed dozens of buildings and caused at least one death continue to plague California as a heat wave ravaging the southern part of the state.

The authorities say that there was a new wind-driven fire broke Friday evening in the hills above Goleta, Santa Barbara County, burning 20 homes and threatening hundreds more.

Further to the south, a fire in the San Bernardino National Forest grew to 1,000 acres and prompted the evacuation of the Forest Falls, a town of about 700 homes.

In San Diego County, a handful of the fires prompted evacuation orders for more than 1,000 homes. A blaze reportedly burned at least five houses in the Alps.

The area was hit by the strong winds that blew embers and a large part of Southern California sweltered as the temperature topped 100 degrees in many areas. The heat wave will continue on Saturday.

Meanwhile, a forest fire on the California-Oregon border has destroyed 40 buildings in Hornbrook, and claimed at least one life.

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