Image: Malibu Presbyterian Church burns as high winds push a wildfire toward multi-million dollar homes, many owned by celebrities, in Malibu, California, 21 October 2007
MALIBU WILDFIRE SLIDESHOW
MALIBU, Calif. - Out-of-control wildfires threatened thousands of Southern California homes Monday, as firefighters raced to beat back the blazes that have engulfed the region, killing one, destroying buildings and forcing thousands to evacuate.
The fires, which covered swaths of drought-parched land from the high desert to the Pacific Ocean, were being fanned by hot, dry Santa Ana desert winds. Some of the worst damage was in, where a church, homes and a castle were charred.
Things got worse early Monday, when several new fires sprouted in, adding to about a dozen blazes that have already burned more than 40,000 acres. Though firefighters had been on high alert because forecasters predicted the winds, they admitted Sunday night that they were overwhelmed.