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California hit by wildfires.

Summary: More than 8,000 people have been told to leave their homes in California as wildfires sweep towards residential areas.

More than 8,000 people have been told to leave their homes in California as wildfires sweep towards residential areas.

State Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger Arnold Alois Schwarzenegger (German pronunciation (IPA): [ˈaɐ̯nɔlt ˈaloɪ̯s ˈʃvaɐ̯ʦənˌʔɛɡɐ]  declared a state of emergency in Santa Barbara Santa Barbara (săn'tə bär`brə, –bərə), city (1990 pop. 85,571), seat of Santa Barbara co., S Calif., on the Pacific Ocean; inc. 1850.  County after high winds blew the wildfire into towards homes, forcing residents to flee as columns of smoke rose from the scenic coastal enclave.

Mr Schwarzenegger said he had asked the Federal Emergency Management Agency The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is the federal agency responsible for coordinating emergency planning, preparedness, risk reduction, response, and recovery. The agency works closely with state and local governments by funding emergency programs and providing technical  to issue an assistance grant to ensure financial resources are available for firefighting 1. firefighting - What sysadmins have to do to correct sudden operational problems. An opposite of hacking. "Been hacking your new newsreader?" "No, a power glitch hosed the network and I spent the whole afternoon fighting fires."
2.
.

TV news helicopters showed homes ablaze but the number could not be immediately determined because of thick smoke.

An official from the Santa Barbara County fire department said the fire was moving rapidly and was being whipped by up to 50mph gusts.

Santa Barbara City Fire Department Chief Pat McElroy said emergency crews were on the front lines but having trouble reaching some of the blazes due to the "very very steep terrain and very high temperatures."

Resident Jerry Morosin said he had refused to evacuate e·vac·u·ate
v.
1. To empty or remove the contents of.

2. To excrete or discharge waste matter, especially of the bowels.
 his home, having experienced wildfires before.

"We've been in fires before. This is not our first rodeo so we've seen this before. It didn't seem to be threatening," he said.

Authorities had warned earlier evacuees Resident or transient persons who have been ordered or authorized to move by competent authorities, and whose movement and accommodation are planned, organized and controlled by such authorities.  not to try to return to their homes because of a forecast for a return of strong winds.

Santa Barbara, a tourist destination A tourist destination is a city, town or other area the economy of which is dependent to a significant extent on the revenues accruing from tourism.

It may contain one or more tourist attractions or visitor attractions and possibly some "tourist traps".
 of more than 400,000 residents, is subject to strong winds that blow through passes and canyons of the mountain range and offshore.

Less than six months ago a fire destroyed more than 200 homes in Santa Barbara and neighbouring Montecito.

Independent Television News Limited 2009. All rights reserved.

Independent Television News Limited 2009. All rights reserved.

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Publication:Independent Television News Limited (ITN)
Date:May 7, 2009
Words:310
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