A pair of wildfires burning without restraint about eight miles apart in Northeast California became the focus of state and federal firefighters today.

Authorities reported that one of the blazes had destroyed eight homes and prompted the precautionary evacuation of Mayer Memorial Hospital. The patients were transferred to a hospital in Redding about 55 miles away.

Wildfires have scorched more than 21,000 acres across California and Oregon prompting Governor Jerry Brown to issue a state of emergency, securing firefighting cost reimbursement for local and state agencies responding to the fires.

The two blazes were among 14 that federal, state and local fire crews were tackling today in Central and Northern California. "Together, they have consumed more than 183 square miles of timber and brush left parched by the state's extended drought," Cal Fire's Dennis Mathisen said.

Federal fire officials said that along with working to protect homes one of their priorities was to safeguard a water station that supplies the city of Eureka.