Video: Redding California Wildfire Shuts I-5, Spreading Quickly Through Shasta County

A fast-spreading wildfire grew to 5,000 acres late on Wednesday night, prompting the closure and evacuation of a major highway linking California and Oregon.

The Shasta County blaze, dubbed the Delta Fire, was first reported yesterday at around 12.51 p.m. north of Lakehead, before it spread almost eight square miles in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest, reported Los Angeles Times. Later that night, the fire quickly grew to at least 5,000 acres with zero containment.

Officials said the fire was human-caused, but did not reveal any further details as to whether it was an accident or an act of arson.

A close encounter with a wildfire forced motorists near Redding, California to abandon their vehicles as flames burned dangerously close to Interstate 5 on Wednesday.

Several people had to be rescued and at least one person was reported injured.

— ABC News (@ABC) September 6, 2018

Both directions of Interstate 5 north of Redding, California closed to traffic as fast-moving wildfire sweeps through Shasta-Trinity National Forest.

— ABC News (@ABC) September 6, 2018

Interstate 5 was shut down 10 miles north of Redding at Fawndale Road to Mott Road, an area just south of Mount Shasta. The fire is still currently burning on both sides of the freeway along the interstate. It is unclear when the road will reopen.

Approximately 600 firefighters and support personnel have been called to extinguish the enormous flame engulfing both timber and bush.

Nearby, just 10 miles from the Delta fire, the Hirz fire continues to burn in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest. It is currently 75 percent contained. Although the Hirz fire is still threatening forestland, the Delta fire appears to be closing in on man-made structures.

The fire's quick proliferation was caused by the area's warm weather, currently around 91 degrees, and low humidity.

Kyle Foster, from the Highway Patrol's Mount Shasta office, revealed that at least 17 semitrailer trucks were abandoned on the freeway, The Times reported. Of those, four had caught fire.

"The positive side of this, Northern California has been very stricken by fires recently, and while it's catastrophic and heartbreaking, most of the citizens and agencies are well versed in these types of situations," Foster said. "The community acts very appropriately when we ask them to leave."

Kerry Greene, a public information officer, said that the Delta Fire was threatening several structures situated in recreational residences, campgrounds and cabins, reported Associated Press. "This is the priority fire," she said.

The Delta Fire comes just weeks after the devastating Carr fire swept through the same area, demolishing almost 1,100 homes and killing eight people. It has since been fully contained.

Rob Elvington, a meteorologist with KRCR News Channel 7, took to Twitter on Wednesday evening to declare that the fire had caused a pyrocumulus cloud.

Largest plume/pyro yet with the #DeltaFire. Above 30,000 ft on the Medford radar. #CAfire #CAwx

— Rob Elvington WAAY 31 (@RobElvington) September 6, 2018
California wildfire
Flames engulf trees along interstate 5 in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest as a tractor trailer drives by north of Redding, California, U.S., September 5, 2018. Reuters