Hundreds of firefighters are battling Alisal Fire which has burned more than 54 sq km in the Santa Ynez Mountains west of Santa Barbara. Officials say only 5 percent of it is contained.
Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez, grappling with a recent wave of prison killings, had ordered the army and the police on Tuesday to take full control of the country's 27 prisons, which are badly overcrowded with some 21,000 inmates.
Death toll of deadly mudslides that followed torrential rains in parts of California's Santa Barbara County rises to 20 with four people still missing, officials say.
Officials say some 25 people were injured and at least 50 others had to be rescued by helicopters. Authorities are warning that the death toll is expected to rise.
Tens of thousands have fled their homes as flames churn through foothill towns near Santa Barbara, the latest flare-up after a week of wind-fanned wildfires throughout the region.
Winds have picked up after a respite and are now pushing blazes closer to Santa Barbara, north of Los Angeles.
Authorities issued a "purple" alert -- never used before -- because of the extreme danger, warning that winds could reach 128km/h severely limiting firefighting efforts.
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