(AP) — Authorities say an arson fire that decimated the town of Lower Lake in Lake County has destroyed 268 structures, including 175 single-family homes and eight businesses. The blaze is 55 percent contained Thursday.
It has charred 3,929 acres since it started Aug. 13.
Cal Fire spokesman Daniel Berlant says residents were able to return home in portions of Lower Lake, a town of 1,300 people about two hours north of San Francisco.
Authorities have charged the man accused of starting the Clayton Fire with 14 counts of arson and one count of attempted arson in connection with 13 separate fires dating back to July 2015.
Defendant Damin Pashilk made his first court appearance Wednesday but did not enter a plea.
Cal Fire says the other fires Pashilk is accused of starting were either quickly extinguished or didn't spread.
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