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High wind stokes fires across Northern California

High wind on Saturday stoked fires across Northern California that had destroyed dozens of homes and forced thousands of residents to flee.

At least 66 homes had been destroyed with 17 others damaged in the Butte County town of Paradise, about 90 miles north of Sacramento. The fire had contributed to at least one death – an elderly woman who suffered a heart attack while evacuating.

Only 35 percent of the fire was contained Saturday, and it had charred more than 36 square miles. Five firefighters suffered minor injuries.

That blaze was just one of a series vexing firefighters across Northern California. A wildfire in Monterey County continued to chew through the Los Padres National Forest, and flames in the Santa Cruz County kept hundreds of residents away from their mountain homes.

In recent days, high temperatures, steady wind and tinder-dry vegetation have contributed to destructive blazes around the state.

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