May 20th, 2014
10:59 PM ET

Cell phone video offers clue to start of California wildfires

Nine major wildfires burned about 40 square miles in San Diego County last week, according to a California Fire spokesman. Authorities have formed a task force to look into the causes of the fires and determine whether or not they were arson.

A cell phone video shot by Adam Jordan captured the early moments of a fire that started in Carlsbad California. The video could be a major clue for investigators trying to determine what sparked the wildfire. Kyung Lah reports.

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Filed under: Kyung Lah • Weather • Wildfires
May 16th, 2014
11:40 PM ET

How a firenado forms

A fire tornado, also known as a "firenado," is a column of flames that resemble a tornado, containing smoke and flames. The fire rises and twists into the air and shoots out flames as it burns. Tom Foreman demonstrates how firenadoes form and describes the dangers of getting too close to one.

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Filed under: Tom Foreman • Weather • Wildfires
May 16th, 2014
07:35 PM ET

Family's home destroyed by wildfires

The San Marcos/Cocos wildfire fire remained "very active" for a third day in California. More than 3,000 acres has burned in just that fire alone. Many evacuations in the area remain in effect.

One family whose home was destroyed talked to Anderson about the rush to escape the fire. "I was at home in the house with the kids and got a call from my husband that he was coming up the hill and noticed a just little bit of smoke," said Amanda Sekerke. She, and her husband Stan rented a home in San Marcos where they lived for three years with their four children. Amanda, who's pregnant with their fifth child, said her husband told her to "get the kids in the car" and that they needed to get out of the area before the fire picked up. She was able to escape with their children, dog and two cats.

The Sekerke family returned to the site of where the house once stood. "There was nothing, so I imagine it must’ve been really hot to melt all the metal .. but it was just all gone, " Mr. Sekerke said. The wildfire destroyed the entire home and their belongings.

If you would like to help the Sekerke family they've set up a website for donations here: http://www.gofundme.com/97dois

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Filed under: Weather • Wildfires
May 15th, 2014
11:19 PM ET

Wildfires raging in Southern California

Wildfires spread rapidly in Southern California are forcing thousands of residents to evacuate. Scorching temperatures, dry conditions and Santa Ana winds are fueling the flames. Some 10,000 acres has burned in San Diego County, including the nearly uncontrollable fire in San Marcos.

Anderson spoke with San Marcos fire chief, Brett Van Wey. There's still a full evacuation of 5,000 homes in the city. "It's a moving target as far as estimating size, we're only about five percent contained right now," Van Wey said.

Watch Gary Tuchman's report from the frontlines in San Marcos, California.

One family whose home was destroyed spoke to Anderson about the miraculous survival of their dog Rocky.

Watch Ted Rowlands’ report from inside an air tanker and see how they battle wildfires from above.

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Filed under: Gary Tuchman • Ted Rowlands • Wildfires
May 14th, 2014
10:28 PM ET

Dangerous battle to contain San Diego area wildfires

At least seven massive wildfires forced the evacuations of tens of thousands of people around the San Diego area. The evacuation order includes a nuclear power plant, part of a U.S. Marine base and the Legoland amusement park. Paul Vercammen reports on firefighters battling to control the fires while also dealing with dangerous heat.

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Filed under: Paul Vercammen • Wildfires
April 30th, 2014
10:22 PM ET

Hundreds of firefighters battling Southern California wildfire

Strong winds and high temperatures are helping to spread a fast moving wildfire that started in the San Bernadino National Forest today. More than 500 firefighters are battling the flames. Paul Vercammen reports the wind is so strong it is keeping firefighting planes and helicopters grounded.

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Filed under: Paul Vercammen • Wildfires
January 17th, 2014
10:22 PM ET

California wildfire burns through drought stricken area

Dry conditions are turning much of California into a fire hazard. A massive wildfire burning outside of Los Angeles is only about one-thrid contained. Several thousands of people were forced to evacuate their neighborhoods. Some are now returning to utter destruction. Kyung Lah has the latest.

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Filed under: Kyung Lah • Wildfires
January 17th, 2014
12:03 AM ET

Firefighters race to bring massive California wildfire under control

It began as a campfire, grew into a wildfire and is now a 1,700 acre inferno. Firefighters are battling the flames just outside of Los Angeles. Casey Wian has the latest on the race to contain the blaze.

Filed under: Casey Wian • Wildfires
August 26th, 2013
10:49 PM ET

Monster wildfire burns inside Yosemite

Flames are spreading fast through one of America's most beautiful stretches of wilderness. Thousands of firefighters are battling a massive wildfire inside Yosemite National Park. The Rim fire already has scorched an area the size of Chicago. It's now moving toward an area of Yosemite that includes a reservoir providing water to the city of San Francisco. 360's Gary Tuchman is in Yosemite with the latest.

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Filed under: Gary Tuchman • Wildfires
August 20th, 2013
10:15 PM ET

Homes in danger

A massive firefighting operation is going on right now in Idaho to save homes threatened by an out of control wildfire. Imagine standing by, watching it all from a distance, and not knowing whether your house survived. 360's Gary Tuchman has one resident's story from Hailey, Idaho.

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Filed under: Gary Tuchman • Wildfires
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