Crews battle California blazes before windstorms return

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Crews in Northern and Southern California are racing to surround wildfires that destroyed dozens of homes before returning windstorms blow them back into furious life.

A brief lull Monday allowed some progress on a wine country fire that burned 57 homes. The Sonoma County blaze is only 15% contained.

Fire officials say winds could reach 50 mph (80.46 kph). Some 156,000 people are under evacuation orders and people in neighboring Lake County have been warned to be ready to evacuate.

A 600-acre fire that began Monday burned down eight homes and damaged at least six in the star-studded hills of Los Angeles.

The National Weather Service warned that hot, dry Santa Ana winds will return Tuesday night and extreme fire danger will hover over much of Southern California into Thursday.

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Associated Press writers Don Thompson and Terence Chea in Santa Rosa, Kathleen Ronayne in Sacramento, Janie Har in San Francisco and John Antczak and John Rogers in Los Angeles contributed to this report.

Categories: California News