Nearly 3,000 firefighters deployed as wildfire rages in Northern California

iStock/Thinkstock(LAKE COUNTY, Calif.) — A raging wildfire in Northern California grew by about 3,000 acres on Tuesday as firefighters fought to contain the blaze, which has already destroyed at least 22 homes and buildings, authorities said.

The Pawnee fire has burned at least 13,000 acres in Lake County, California, north of San Francisco, as as high temperatures and windy conditions fanned the flames, fire officials said.

About 2,700 fire fighters have been deployed to the area, but the brutal weather conditions has made the fight difficult. The blaze was about 17 percent contained as of late Tuesday.

“The fire burned very actively throughout the day in the Spring Valley area, north east of Clearlake Oaks in Lake County. The fire is being driven by low relative humidity, erratic winds, and above normal temperatures,” the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said in a statement late Tuesday. “Expanded evacuation orders are in effect for the entire Spring Valley area and residents are reminded to heed all evacuation orders.”

Officials say at least 600 homes, businesses and other buildings are at risk as the fire moves northeast.

“The firefighters OMG, the minute you think you’re in danger, they are there,” local resident MaryAnne Silva told ABC News. “So thankful for them putting their lives on the line to keep us safe.”

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