Strong Santa Ana winds in California contributed to the fast spread of fires in the southern portion of the state Tuesday. At least five fires were active Tuesday afternoon, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

Firefighters continued to work to put out the blazes. Two in particular, the Thomas Fire and the Creek Fire, appeared to be the largest wildfires in Southern California Tuesday.

Thomas Fire

The Thomas Fire appeared to be the largest blaze in Southern California Tuesday. In Ventura County, north of Santa Paula, the fire consumed some 45,000 acres. Both mandatory evacuations and voluntary evacuations were in effect and evacuation shelters were opened at the Ventura County Fairgrounds and other facilities. Numerous schools and highways in the area were closed.

Some 150 structures had already been destroyed, while 27,000 people were already forced to evacuate as a result of the Thomas Fire. An estimated 500 firefighters were deployed to fight the flames in addition to airplanes and helicopters providing water drops.

“The fire is still out of control and structures are threatened throughout the fire area," the Ventura County Sheriff's Office announced. "Due to the intensity of the fire, crews are having trouble making access, but there are multiple reports of structures on fire."

Creek Fire

The Creek Fire off Kagel Canyon Road north of Lake View Terrace continued to burn in Los Angeles County. The fire had consumed some 2,500 acres thus far, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department. The fire began at around 3:42 a.m. local time.

Residents in Lopez County, Little Tujunga County and Kagel County were ordered to evacuate as a result of the fire. Initial reports suggested some people may have been trapped by the flames, though it had not been confirmed.  

Cal Fire also listed the Wilson Fire, the Riverdale Fire and the Oak Fire as active blazes. Additional resources were being brought in to help California firefighters push back the flames, the Los Angeles County Fire Chief confirmed.

Ventura Fire Firefighters battle a wildfire as it burns along a hillside near homes in Santa Paula, California, Dec. 5, 2017. Photo: Getty Images