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July 4th crowd temporarily trapped by growing California wildfire

A map showing communities being threatened Tuesday afternoon by the Electra Fire in Amador County, Calif., which temporarily trapped around 100 people Monday evening. Image by Amador County Sheriff's Office/Facebook
A map showing communities being threatened Tuesday afternoon by the Electra Fire in Amador County, Calif., which temporarily trapped around 100 people Monday evening. Image by Amador County Sheriff's Office/Facebook

July 5 (UPI) -- A wildfire in California continues to grow and forced dozens of people to temporarily take shelter at a Pacific Gas & Electric facility Monday night.

Between 85 and 100 people had been celebrating the July 4 holiday near the border between Amador and Calaveras counties when they were forced to run from the flames, said Amador County Sheriff Gary Redman.

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All were later safely evacuated from the area around 9:30 p.m. PDT, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

The two counties are located southeast of Sacramento and smoke from the fire can be seen from the state capitol.

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"Cal-Fire has expanded the mandatory evacuation and evacuation warning zones. The pictured map displays the updated mandatory evacuation zone in red and the evacuation warning area in yellow," the Amador County Sheriff's Office said in a Facebook post Tuesday afternoon.

The Electra Fire broke out Monday afternoon and continues to spread, having already charred 3,034 acres. The fast-moving blaze remained 0% contained by Tuesday afternoon, and was threatening 450 structures.

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More than 13,000 Pacific Gas and Electric customers in Amador County were out of power late Monday night.

Around 800 or 900 people were under evacuation alerts or mandatory evacuation orders between the two counties as of Monday night.

Authorities believe the fire may have been sparked by fireworks or a barbecue, although the official cause was still under investigation as of Tuesday afternoon.

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The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection sent a team of specialists to the area Tuesday.

"CAL FIRE Incident Management Team (IMT) 3 has been activated to the #ElectraFire. IMT's are made up of trained personnel who provide operational management and support to largescale, expanding incidents," the department wrote on Twitter.

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