California wildfire becomes costliest ever to fight at $200M

September 20, 2016 GMT

BIG SUR, Calif. (AP) — A wildfire burning for nearly two months on California’s Central Coast has surpassed $200 million in firefighting costs, becoming the costliest to fight in U.S. history.

Data from the National Interagency Fire Center released Monday says the so-called Soberanes fire has cost $206.7 million to fight so far.

That puts it well past the previous high of $165 million established by the 2002 Biscuit Fire that burned in California and Oregon.

The figure does not include the actual damages done by the fire like destroyed homes, only the costs of extinguishing and containing it.


With thousands of firefighters on the lines, the U.S. Forest Service says blaze has cost as much as $8 million per day to fight, though it is now about $2 million after the fire has calmed.