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Calmer Winds Helping Firefighters Battle Shirley Fire Near Bakersfield

Tulare County Fire / Twitter
 

Tulare County Fire / Twitter

(AP) -- Two days of diminished winds have helped firefighters surround 85 percent of a wildfire burning in the Sequoia National Forest area about 40 miles from Bakersfield.

The U.S. Forest Service says flames burned brightly and sent smoke skyward within the fire lines yesterday, but did not jump outside of them.

But they say a high-pressure system headed into the area could bring a drop in humidity and a bump in fire activity.

The fire has destroyed three houses, damaged another and forced hundreds to be evacuated. It has burned more than 2,600 acres, and residents were told Monday they could return home.