Mosquito Fire, California's Largest Wildfire of 2022, Grows to 100 Square Miles; thousands evacuated
California crews continued to battle the largest wildfire of 2022 on Thursday, despite a drop in containment levels.
The Mosquito Fire ignited on Sept. 6 and by Thursday had grown to just over 100 square miles in Placer and El Dorado counties.
The massive blaze surpassed the size of the McKinney Fire, which burned more than 93 square miles in California in July and August.
The growing fire, fueled by critically dry vegetation, threatened more than 9,200 structures Thursday, Cal Fire said.
According to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, the fire has destroyed over 70 structures so far.
The Placer County Sheriff's Office reduced the fire's containment to 20% Wednesday, down from 25% the previous day.
Thousands of people were ordered or warned to evacuate as the fire burned east of Foresthill, California.
One firefighter was injured with non-life threatening injuries, according to Cal Fire Information Officer Scott McLean.
What areas were evacuated?
Cal Fire said more than 11,000 people had been evacuated from communities near the Mosquito Fire in Placer County, including Michigan Bluff,
in the center of Foresthill and Todd Valley; as well as Volcanoville, Canyon Creek and Bald Mountain in El Dorado County.
Ninety people refused to evacuate, Placer County Sheriff's Office Lt. Josh Barnhart said at a community meeting Wednesday night.
Several animal shelters were also forced to evacuate, according to Cal Fire. No new evacuation orders were issued Thursday, McLean said.