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California wildfires: 5 people found dead in cars trying to flee

California wildfires: 5 people found dead in cars trying to flee

"These firefighters were in the rescue mode all day yesterday".

Videos of the area posted on social media showed cars driving along what appeared to be a tunnel of flame, while others depicted untouched lawns or buildings set against a backdrop of deep orange, the fire racing towards people's homes.

Still, other Paradise residents were critical - not of the traffic jams that ensued, but of what they said was a lack of warning to get out in the first place.

A California fire official says he has reports of several hundred structures that have been destroyed in a Northern California town ravaged by a wildfire, but officials say they won't have an exact count until they can get into the area.

The Adventist Health Feather River hospital in town caught fire, as firefighters battled the flames, Lillis wrote.

Wind in the valley calmed down, but they were still shifting and erratic along the ridgetops, with speeds of up to 45 miles per hour (72 kph), he said.

"The whole hill's on fire", she said while crying.

The Camp Fire started Thursday morning near Paradise, a town of around 27,000 some 90 miles north of Sacramento.

"Pretty much the community of Paradise is destroyed".

"Basically, we haven't had rain since last May or before that", said Read, the fire chief.

Fires are burning in Northern and Southern California.

The Camp Fire, in Butte County, north of the state's capital, Sacramento, had burned through some 18,000 acres as of Thursday evening and was 0 percent contained as officials scrambled to evacuate area residents.

Strong winds blow smoke horizontally over the the Santa Monica Mountains and the Pacific Ocean over the city of Malibu.

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On Friday, Newsom also declared a state of emergency for the raging fires also ravaging Ventura County near Los Angeles as well.

The fire in Paradise was reported shortly after daybreak Thursday.

This photo provided by Nicole Kowalczyke shows a piece of a burned page that fell out of the sky in Chico, Calif., on November 8, 2018, as the Camp Fire burns nearby.

Officials were sending as many firefighters as they could, Cal Fire spokesperson Rick Carhart said.

The Butte County Sheriff's Office said Friday the victims were found in the same area in the town of Paradise.

"What pisses me off is I don't think they told everybody soon enough", said Kim Benn, 49, a neighbor who realized she needed to flee the fire when another resident pounded on her door. "That's when I made a decision to get out".

The evacuation center at the Neighborhood Church in Chico is full, according to the Butte County Twitter page.

"Things started exploding", said resident Gina Oviedo.

Many abandoned their cars and trucks on the side of the road.

The fire, which began early on Thursday, was the fiercest of several wind-driven blazes across California, during what has been one of the worst years for wildfires in the state. Honea said they could not immediately be identified because they were burned so badly.

Authorities are recovering bodies "with as much dignity as we can afford them", he said.

"We grabbed our animals and some food and some clothes and we're getting the heck out of here", one man said. He described the community as having a lot of elderly residents, some with no vehicles.

"It's the black of night at 9 a.m.", McClean said. By 8.20 am, the house was burning'.


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