The Latest: Some California residents allowed back home

The Latest on California wildfires (all times local):

7:25 p.m.

Officials have allowed about 1,000 residents of a rural Northern California area to return home as firefighters continue working to surround a wildfire that destroyed a dozen homes.

Lake County sheriff's Lt. Corey Paulich says evacuation orders were lifted Wednesday afternoon for about 500 homes in Spring Valley, north of San Francisco. He says orders still remain in place for about 300 people.

The fire that erupted Saturday has burned through tinder-dry chaparral but Paulich says it's been moving away from the populated area.

State fire officials say the blaze is 30 percent contained and its spread is slowing, although hot, dry weather through the week means the danger isn't over.

The fire destroyed a dozen homes and 10 outbuildings and damaged six other buildings. There's no word on what sparked it.

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5:20 p.m.

Evacuation orders have been lifted for some of the hundreds of residents who had to flee their homes near a Northern California wildfire.

The Lake County Sheriff's Department said it had lifted a mandatory evacuation order for the Spring Valley community of Lake County as of 4 p.m. Wednesday, but was keeping an evacuation order in place for the Double Eagle Ranch area.

Evacuation orders have been in place since the weekend that forced at least 1,500 people to leave their homes.

The California's Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said the fire in Lake County, which is north of San Francisco, was 25 percent contained as Wednesday morning, up from 17 percent on Tuesday.

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7:50 a.m.

Fire crews are gaining ground against a Northern California wildfire that forced more than 1,000 people to flee their homes and has destroyed 12 homes.

The California's Department of Forestry and Fire Protection says the fire in Lake County north of San Francisco is 25 percent contained as Wednesday morning, up from 17 percent on Tuesday.

The blaze burning through dry brush, grass and timber has scorched 21 square miles (54 square kilometers) since it started on Saturday and is threatening 600 buildings.

State fire officials say high temperatures in the 80s, low humidity and erratic winds helped the blaze expand on Tuesday and that the same weather was expected on Wednesday.

At least 1,500 people remain under mandatory evacuation.