Nearly 12,000 firefighters and support personnel are battling what Gov. Gray Davis said may be the costliest disaster California has ever faced. The state is spending an estimated $9 million a day fighting the wildfires. The total cost could reach $200 million, while the blazes take a $2 billion toll on the California economy, state officials said.
Some of the fires were believed set by arsonists; one was ignited by a lost hunter's signal fire.