The Dixie Fire had consumed about 432,813 acres, according to an estimate released this morning. That’s 676 square miles (1,751 square kilometers) — moving the blaze from the state’s sixth-largest wildfire ever to its third-largest overnight.
The fire’s cause was under investigation, but Pacific Gas & Electric has said it may have been sparked when a tree fell on one of the utility’s power lines. No injuries or deaths have been reported.
The blaze exploded on Wednesday and Thursday through timber, grass and brush so dry that one fire official described it as “basically near combustion.” Dozens of homes had already burned before the flames made new runs.