PARADISE EVACUATED: Fast-Growing Butte County Fire Has Already Burned 5000 Acres

Clay Curtis
November 9, 2018

The blaze began early on Thursday and quickly charred 3,237 hectares, forcing the evacuation of the 27,000 residents of Paradise, about 240 km northeast of San Francisco, and other communities, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) said in a statement.

The entire town of Paradise was under evacuation as several homes in the area became engulfed in the fire, Cal Fire Public Information Officer Scott McClean said at a press conference Thursday. Paradise itself is around 70 miles south of Redding, where the Carr Fire killed eight people and destroyed more than 1,000 homes in July. The fire was first reported around 6:30 a.m., and over just a few hours, the fire grew from 10 acres to more than 10,000.

A fast-moving wildfire roared through a Northern California town on Thursday, with reports of fatalities as it burned hundreds of homes and sent tens of thousands of people fleeing 50-foot-high (15.25-metres-high) flames, authorities and a Reuters witness said.

She and her husband "knocked on doors, yelled and screamed" to alert as numerous residents of 53 mobile homes and recreational vehicles as possible to leave, Bernacett said.

Photos and videos on social media show just how intense the massive wildfire has become.

'My husband tried his best to get everybody out. Emergency crews were working to help people evacuate there, he said. The whole hill's on fire.

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Officials said the blaze has consumed more than 26 square miles so far. "There are dozens of strike teams that we're bringing in from all parts of the state".

Thick grey smoke and ash filled the sky above Paradise and could be seen from miles away.

Fire officials said the flames were being fueled by winds, low humidity, dry air and severely parched brush and ground from months without rain.

At the hospital in Paradise, more than 60 patients were evacuated to other facilities and some buildings caught fire and were damaged.

Camp Fire in Butte County Red circles on this live-updating map are actively burning areas, as detected by satellite.

Hospital spokeswoman Jill Kinney said all patients were evacuated.

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