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Wildfires destroy homes, force evacuations in Northern California


Destructive wildfires continue to rage in California's wine country as strong winds threaten to make the fires grow larger.

Mandatory evacuations were issued late Sunday after fires broke out across four counties, the Associated Press reported.

According to the Press Democrat, homes were destroyed as well as a historic barn in Santa Rosa, California.

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Two women hug as they watch houses burn in Santa Rosa, Calif., Monday, Oct. 9, 2017. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)


Additional evacuations were issued Monday morning for areas around Santa Rosa, according to the Santa Rosa Police Department.

"Leave immediately. This is a life-threatening situation," the police department wrote on its Facebook page.


Sutter Hospital and Kaiser Hospital in Santa Rosa are no longer in operation and patients have been evacuated, according to Sonoma County officials.

The Sonoma County Emergency Operations Center was opened just after midnight Monday to respond to the numerous fires.

Due to significant smoke in the area, officials advised residents to stay indoors at evacuation centers.

In neighboring Napa County, firefighters were battling the Tubbs Fire, which has burned 20,000 acres.

The wildfires are the latest in what has been an above-average wildfire season in the United States according to the U.S. Forest Service.

Over $2 billion has been spent by the Forest Service to suppress fires during the 2017 wildfire season, making it the most expensive season ever.