New fire forces evacuations near Minton

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Associated Press

Posted on August 19, 2012 at 2:00 PM

Updated Sunday, Aug 19 at 2:02 PM

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Fire officials say that a wildfire in California is threatening small communities in the far northern part of the state.

The fire, which started Saturday, has destroyed four homes and consumed nearly 11 square miles as it burns near the towns of Minton, Shingleton, and Viola.

State fire spokesman Daniel Berlant says 3,500 homes spread out across a rural area along the border of Tehama and Shasta counties are threatened. The fire is burning in a rugged area of thick forests about 170 miles north of Sacramento.

The cause of the fire has not been determined, but officials say it started after a series of lightning strikes in the area.

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