California California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger urged residents to heed mandatory evacuation orders Saturday as more than 7,000 firefighters battled to control nearly a dozen blazes across the parched state.
Schwarzenegger met with firefighters at the Lockheed Fire in the Santa Cruz Mountains, a day after the governor returned to the state from attending the funeral of his mother-in-law, Eunice Shriver.
Meanwhile, a separate fire in Yuba County north of Sacramento grew dramatically and officials more than doubled the firefighting force to contain it.
The Lockheed Fire has blackened close to 8 square miles of remote wilderness since Wednesday and prompted mandatory evacuations of the mountain communities of Swanton and Bonny Doon, which have about 2,400 residents and several wineries.