Sep 5, 2011, 11 p.m.

Fire from plane crash menaces California homes

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A brush fire ignited by a fatal small-plane crash near the mountain town of Tehachapi, north of Los Angeles, forced hundreds of homes to be evacuated on Monday and left some 8,600 acres charred by nightfall in its second day. Although the fire nearly doubled in size on Monday, some 600 firefighters backed by water-dropping helicopters and bulldozers managed to extend containment lines around 10 percent of its perimeter in steep, rugged terrain, up from 5 percent earlier in the day, fire officials said.

Two dead in Texas wildfires, homes destroyed

SAN ANTONIO (Reuters) - Sixty separate wildfires, whipped by strong winds, were burning across Texas on Monday, destroying hundreds of homes and killing at least two people, officials said. Authorities in Gregg County, in northeast Texas, say a 20-year-old woman and her 18-month-old daughter were killed on Sunday when they were trapped in their mobile home by flames.

In the world's breadbasket, climate change feeds some worry

CHICAGO (Reuters) - It can't happen here, can it? The United States, the breadbasket and supplier of last resort for a hungry world, has been such an amazing food producer in the last half-century that most Americans take for granted annual bounteous harvests of grain, meat, dairy, fruits, vegetables and other crops.

Louisiana coastal towns struggle with storm flooding

NEW ORLEANS (Reuters) - Louisiana Gulf Coast towns and inland waterways struggled with flooding on Monday as the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee continued to test flood barriers but the city of New Orleans remained in fairly good shape. Jerry Sneed, deputy mayor of public safety for New Orleans, reported no significant problems on Monday morning, with standing water remaining in only a few areas outside the levee protection system. No deaths were reported from the storm.

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