The western USA is reeling from a devastating wildfires season that has destroyed more than 2.6million acres of land, killed at least 24 people and given the area the world’s worst air quality. Two fires in Oregon were so close together they were in danger of merging on Friday, near the suburbs of the state’s largest city, Portland. Hundreds of firefighters backed up by water-dropping helicopters are battling the blazes in Oregon right now.
Where are the fires in Oregon?
The Almeda fire, situated close to the Oregon town of Medford, has moved with shocking speed.
Thousands of people have been forced to evacuate their homes with little or no notice, thanks to Almeda.
The fire rapidly burnt though residential areas, leaving a number of communities largely damaged in its wake.
As of Friday afternoon, two people have been killed, and roughly 600 homes and 100 commercial buildings were damaged or destroyed thanks to Almeda.
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The Beachie Creek ire, which has killed two people and injured another two, is burning over 180,000 acres and the Lionshead fire is burning an estimated 110,000 acres.
The fires have seen some 500,000 people, equating more than 10 percent of Oregon’s 4.4million population, ordered to evacuate their homes.
Oregon Governor Kate Brown said there were dozens of missing people in Jackson and Marion counties.
Firefighters have been aided by extra humidity and winds which changed direction over the last few days as they try to stop the fires spreading even further.