The monstrous fire burning in Oregon has continued to grow since starting in early July and is still only 25% contained, according to reports.
The Bootleg Fire, which was started by a lightning strike, has charred a 476-square-mile area or approximately the size of Los Angeles. It has destroyed at least 67 homes and 100 buildings, according to Yahoo News.
“We are running firefighting operations through the day and all through the night,” incident commander Joe Hessel told the Associated Press Thursday. “This fire is a real challenge, and we are looking at sustained battle for the foreseeable future.”
“Last year, the area burned was more than twice the previous record,” Phillip Duffy, executive director of the Woodwell Climate Research Center, said Thursday. Duffy said when you get even “a little spark, it quickly grows and gets out of control,” saying the fuel conditions have been very dry.
Officials say megafires like the one in Oregon, which is roughly 300 miles southeast of Portland, usually burn until late fall when rain puts them out.