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U.S. Wildfire Alert Reaches Top Level

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - U.S. fire managers on Thursday raised the nation's wildfire readiness status to its highest level for the first time in two years, as California and several other Western states faced heightened danger from lightning storms. The National Fire Preparedness Level was elevated one notch from "PL-4" to "PL-5," the top ranking on a five-point scale, recognizing that firefighting resources have been strained to their limits by the large number and scope of blazes in the west. The move allows for emergency assistance to be called upon from the U.S. military and even other countries, according to the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, Idaho.
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