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Wind-Driven Wildfire Destroys 40 Homes At Base Of Sierra Nevada

SWALL MEADOWS, Calif. (AP) -- Fire crews have increased containment of a wind-driven wildfire that destroyed 40 homes, but say they don't know yet when residents evacuated from two small California towns at the eastern base of the Sierra Nevada will be able to return home.

California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Capt. Liz Brown says dozens of power poles have come down in the communities of Swall Meadows and Paradise, creating hazards for the roughly 250 residents who have been evacuated. Crews were assessing trees in the two communities on Sunday to ensure they wouldn't come down.

The fire started near a highway on the border of Inyo and Mono counties Friday afternoon. Firefighters made progress after rain moved in, and they have since contained 75 percent of the 11-square-mile blaze.

© Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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