Latest: Fire containment up, evacuees return in California

A firefighter sprays water as flames from a wildfire consume a residence near Oroville, Calif., on Sunday, July 9, 2017. Evening winds drove the fire through several neighborhoods leveling homes in its path. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Josh Cornelison kisses girlfriend Sharon Reitan as she shows evacuation shelter volunteers video of their burned home on Sunday, July 9, 2017, in Oroville, Calif. A wildfire leveled their home, as well as several neighbor's residences, as it burned though a mountain community Friday. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Krystle Chambers, who with her father Chuck Wilsey had to evacuate their property near Oroville, Calif., waits at an evacuation center near Oroville, Calif., Monday, July 10, 2017. They were among about 4,000 people evacuated as flames raced through grassy foothills in the Sierra Nevada, about 60 miles (97 kilometers) north of Sacramento. Sheriff's deputies drove through neighborhoods announcing evacuation orders over loudspeakers. "It's hard, it's rough," she said. "Way too many hits. First it's this side of town, then the other side of town. It almost makes you want to move." (AP Photo/Krystle Chambers)

OROVILLE, Calif. — The Latest on wildfires across the U.S. West (all times local):

7:10 a.m.

Crews have increased containment of a major Northern California wildfire that sent thousands fleeing homes over the weekend.

Officials on Wednesday also downgraded the number of structures threatened by the fire near Oroville from several thousand to roughly 600. Evacuees are slowly returning to their homes. At least 41 homes and 55 other buildings have been destroyed.

The blaze in the grassy foothills of the Sierra Nevada has burned nearly 9 square miles (23 square kilometers) and injured four firefighters. It's 60 percent contained.

A small wildfire east of San Jose has destroyed three homes and forced evacuations. It's 50 percent contained.

At least 3,500 people remain out of their homes from a pair of blazes in Santa Barbara County and officials have not said when the evacuation orders might be lifted.

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