CLEARLAKE, Calif. — A utility worker was killed near a Northern California wildfire as crews working in sweltering conditions battled multiple blazes, including twin fires that exploded in size and forced hundreds more to evacuate rural communities, officials said Sunday.

The Pacific Gas and Electric employee was fatally injured in a vehicle-related accident Saturday on the western edge of the Carr Fire in Shasta County, said utility spokeswoman Melissa Subbotin. Jairus Ayeta, who was in his 20s, worked as an apprentice lineman and was part of a PG&E crew working in “dangerous terrain” to restore power, she said.

Ayeta is the seventh person to die in the immense blaze that has been burning for two weeks near Redding, where armies of firefighters and fleets of aircraft continue battling the flames about 100 miles south of the Oregon state line. Two firefighters and four residents, including two children, were also killed. The fire was more than 40 percent contained Sunday.

Meanwhile to the south, new evacuations were ordered Saturday evening near twin fires burning in Mendocino and Lake counties across wilderness on both sides of Clear Lake. Dry, hot winds fueled both blazes, which have collectively charred nearly 400 square miles of brush and timber. The entire so-called Mendocino Complex Fire is now one of the largest on record in the state, officials said.

The Ranch Fire was just 22 percent contained and the River Fire was 50 percent contained. New evacuations were ordered in neighboring Glenn and Colusa counties, including an area just east of the boundary of Mendocino National Forest.

Some 15,000 structures were threatened, 68 homes have been destroyed and at least a dozen are damaged, officials said.

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