Saturday, 17 November, 2018

Hundreds of homes destroyed by California wildfire, deaths reported

Camp Fire Smoke Smoke from the Camp Fire Camp Fire Smoke Smoke from the Camp Fire
Patty Aguilar | 09 November, 2018, 08:56

He said sheriff's deputies helped patients evacuate.

"Every engine that we could put on the fire is on the fire right now, and more are coming", he said. By Thursday afternoon, the fire was growing at the rate of about one football field every three seconds, assisted by dry conditions and wind gusts of up to 65 miles per hour.

Evacuations were underway as firefighters battled a massive blaze, dubbed the Camp Fire, that was threatening the town of Paradise in Butte County Thursday, officials said.

A fast-moving wildfire roared through a Northern California town on Thursday, with reports of fatalities as it engulfed dozens of buildings and tens of thousands of people fled the flames, police and state authorities said.

Google Maps continues to update its 2018 California fire map on the various blazes, as well as a Google Crisis Map with information about specific California wildfires including the Camp Fire.

The sheriff confirmed reports that evacuees had to abandon their vehicles. It's very surreal. Things always work out, but the unknown is a little scary.

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I heard these big pops. "You know, I think it's going to be something that we're going to have to come together and move past". Well, I don't want to say he was dead, but he was shot. "I tried to get as many people to cover as I could", Knapp said.

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The wildfire was reported around daybreak.

The town of Chico, population 93,000, was potentially threatened as 35-mile-per hour (56 kph) winds drove the blaze westward, he added. "It's really dry and we have low humidity - and unfortunately those are great conditions for a fire to spread".

Video footage taken by ABC Redding affiliate KRCR showed the hospital surrounded by thick smoke as the fire illuminated the darkened sky in the background. She said a group of 20 other patients were initially evacuated but then returned to the facility because of gridlocked traffic.

The Adventist Health Feather River Hospital in Paradise evacuated all its patients and staff, given its close proximity to the fire, and transported them safely to hospitals in neighboring towns, said Jill Kinney, an Adventist Health spokeswoman.

The Camp Fire, which started early on Thursday near Camp Creek, has been fuelled by strong winds and dry forest.

Four hospital employees were briefly trapped in the basement and rescued by California Highway Patrol officers, Kinney said.

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