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emfizz.com December 16, 2017


California wildfires grow in size as flames reach Rupert Murdoch vineyard

08 December 2017, 01:01 | Andy Ferguson

Skirball Fire Burns Near Rupert Murdoch’s Bel Air Vineyard Rupert Murdoch's Bel Air vineyard is shown on the Moraga Estate website

Rupert Murdoch's Bel Air vineyard is shown on the Moraga Estate website

"The property was evacuated but based on what we are seeing on TV there may be some damage to some buildings in the upper vineyard area", he said in a statement on Twitter.

Murdoch bought the 16-acre property for about $30 million in 2013.

The Bel Air blaze is only one of four other wildfires now being tackled around Southern California.

Edison, the state's electric grid operator, declared a local transmission emergency after the loss of high-voltage power lines serving the Ventura and Santa Barbara areas.

Almost 200,000 people have been evacuated from their homes, and 150 structures have been damaged as of Wednesday morning, with California's governor Jerry Brown declaring a state of emergency.

Hot, dry seasonal winds are expected to fan the fires.

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Roxanne Langer at Moraga Estate said a temperature-controlled wine storage shed burned after the fire erupted before dawn Wednesday but was unclear how much wine was lost. "There will be no ability to fight fire in these kinds of winds".

Hundreds of homes have already been destroyed across the Los Angeles metropolitan area and as many as five fires have closed highways, schools and museums.

In the San Fernando Valley north of Los Angeles, the Creek Fire destroyed at least 30 homes, blackened more than 11,000 acres and forced the evacuation of 2,500 homes and a convalescent centre north of Interstate 210 on Tuesday.

At this time, no other wine estates are thought to have been damaged by the fires, however authorities say some 12,000 structures remain threatened by the fire. Three firefighters who were injured and admitted to hospital are in stable condition, the Los Angeles Fire Department said.

The fire staus was at 475 acres with 5% containment.

The largest and most destructive of the wildfires in southern California has grown to 140 square miles and fire officials have said the worst may be yet to come.



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