October 12, 2017
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The home that Peanuts creator Charles Schulz built in Santa Rosa burned down Monday as devastating wildfires swept across Northern California, his son, Monte Schulz, said Thursday.

Charles Schulz's widow, Jean Schulz, 78, was able to escape before the flames engulfed the house, built by the Schulz family in the 1970s. Charles Schulz lived there until he died in 2000, and any Peanuts memorabilia that was in the house was destroyed. "The fire came by at two in the morning," Monte Schulz told The Associated Press. "Everything's gone."

Most of Schulz's original Peanuts artwork and memorabilia are at the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center, which is in Santa Rosa but was safe from the blaze. Monte Schulz lives 300 miles away in Santa Barbara, but his brother, Craig, still lives in Santa Rosa, and also lost his home in the fire. Catherine Garcia

October 9, 2017
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The wind-driven fires north of San Francisco that have killed at least 10 people and burned down 1,500 structures have also destroyed several wineries, hitting an industry vital to the region's economy.

Paradise Ridge Winery in Santa Rosa, known for its outdoor sculpture garden and sweeping views, has burned down, as has Nicholson Ranch in Sonoma and Frey Vineyards in Mendocino County's Redwood Valley, known for producing organic and biodynamic wines. The Atlas Fire is raging through Napa's Stag's Leap District, known as the "premier cabernet sauvignon growing region," the San Francisco Chronicle says, and at least one winery, Signorello Estates, has been destroyed. Several wineries remain under threat.

The fires will have a devastating impact on the wine industry, with Napa Valley wine country the epicenter. For vineyards that are completely destroyed and have to be replanted, it will take three to five years for the vines to bear fruit, and at wineries were the vineyards aren't damaged, smoke could taint the grapes. At this time of year, most wineries are almost done with their harvests, and thousands of bottles of inventory and vintages of wine in barrels have likely been destroyed. Wineries in Napa Valley employ 46,000 people, the Chronicle reports, and in 2016, more than 3.5 million people visited the region, bringing in $80.3 million in tax revenue. Catherine Garcia

October 9, 2017
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Authorities say at least 10 people have died and more than 1,500 structures have been destroyed as at least 14 fires rage across eight counties in Northern California.

Tens of thousands of residents have evacuated from their homes in Napa, Sonoma, Yuba, Mendocino, and other counties north of San Francisco. Combined, five of the largest fires have burned more than 70,000 acres, and entire subdivisions, like Coffey Park in Santa Rosa, have burned to the ground.

While there was a substantial amount of rain last winter, the vegetation in the area is still dry due to the years-long drought. The flames are moving swiftly, thanks to high winds, warm temperatures, and low humidity, and the smoke is reaching San Francisco and San Jose. Many of the fires started Sunday night, and officials are investigating what caused them. Catherine Garcia

September 3, 2017

The La Tuna fire in Los Angeles has become the "largest fire in the history of L.A. city in terms of its acreage," said L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti on Saturday. The wildfire has spread to more than 5,000 acres, prompting hundreds of evacuations and destroying three buildings so far.

About 800 firefighters — beset by high temperatures, low humidity, and volatile winds — have managed to get the blaze 10 percent contained as of Sunday morning. This is just one wildfire of many currently burning in western states including California, Oregon, and Washington. Bonnie Kristian

September 2, 2017

Large wildfires are burning in Western states including California, Montana, Oregon, and Washington, requiring evacuations and road closures. Firefighting efforts are complicated by hot weather with low humidity, as well as "very steep and rugged terrain."

Much of the region, even in areas relatively distant from the fires, is dealing with heavy smoke that is raising health concerns and disrupting outdoor events. "There aren't even the correct health categories to describe what they're seeing," said air quality specialist Saran Coefield of the smoke in one Montana town. Bonnie Kristian

July 26, 2017

Summer wildfires have forced the evacuation of about 12,000 residents and vacationers in southern France this week as officials scramble to arrange temporary housing across the Côte d’Azur region. More than 4,000 firefighters have mobilized to fight the "apocalyptic" flames, which are visible from many beachside resorts.

"The sky was all red," one vacationing evacuee told France's Le Monde. "It was a huge blaze with enormous flames spreading everywhere."

Wildfires are also burning in nearby Corsica, Portugal, Italy, and Albania. Bonnie Kristian

July 9, 2017

Record heat and two fast-moving wildfires prompted evacuations in southern California Saturday as about 1,000 firefighters struggle to contain the blazes. The Whittier Fire is in Los Padres National Forest, north of Los Angeles. It was started by a vehicle fire Saturday afternoon and spread across 5,400 acres in a matter of hours.

The nearby Alamo Fire has grown to nearly 20,000 acres. "Low humidity, high heat, and the winds are right — and there's just a lot of stuff to burn," said a Santa Barbara County representative. Neither fire has destroyed any buildings so far. Bonnie Kristian

June 25, 2017

No less than 18 large wildfires are burning in the West and Southwest regions of the U.S., aggravated by extreme heat and lack of rain. The two largest blazes are in Utah and Arizona, but there are also fires in California, New Mexico, Nevada, and Oregon.

Wildfires have burned more than 2.5 million acres in the United States in 2017 alone, about 1 million acres more than is typical for this time of year. In Utah, 800 people have been evacuated, and 13 homes have burned. That fire began June 17 and is only 5 percent contained. Bonnie Kristian

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