Death toll from California wildfires rises as 130 still missing

15 November, 2018, 07:30 | Author: Norman Carr
  • California Highway Patrol officers came to the aid of this potbelly pig they rescued in Butte County as the Camp Fire continues to burn

California has endured two of its worst wildfire seasons in recorded history in the past two years, which experts attribute in large part to prolonged drought across the western United States.

In less than one week, the Camp Fire has already destroyed more structures than any fire California had before it: more than 7,800 homes and businesses are gone.

Most of the fatalities have been reported from the town of Paradise, population 26,000, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains about 130 kilometres north of Sacramento.

The sheriff said he also has requested three portable morgue teams from the United States military, a "disaster mortuary" crew and an unspecified number of cadaver dog units to assist in the search for human remains.

"You betcha", Zimmerman said while buying furniture for a rental home in Yuba City, where she and her husband will live with two daughters who also lost their homes when the Camp Fire stormed through.

What is the latest on the Camp Fire?

While prospects for suppressing the fire grew more hopeful, authorities stepped up the grim task of sifting through rubble of homes obliterated in wind-driven flames that roared through Paradise, sending residents fleeing for their lives.

The death toll from two California wildfires has now reached 50 and authorities in northern California have released a list of missing persons, a lot of them elderly people who lived in Paradise, CA.

More than 50,000 people have fled the Camp blaze, according to member station KQED.

After touring some of California's earlier wildfire zones in August, Zinke blamed "gross mismanagement of forests" because of timber harvest restrictions that he said were supported by "environmental terrorist groups".

The declaration provides for federal assistance to aid state firefighting and recovery efforts in the counties of Butte, Ventura and Los Angeles.

All the six victims were found in their homes, the officer said. "They save thousands and thousands of people", DeGeneres said Tuesday on her show, reported the site.

"We have not seen anything that includes a discussion with the customer in question about "sparks" and PG&E infrastructure", PG&E spokesman Paul Doherty said in an emailed statement Tuesday evening. "She said, 'I ain't going anywhere".

Gibson said, "It happened so fast".

But lawyers for some of the victims are pointing to lax maintenance by an electric utility as the proximate cause of the fire, which officially remains under investigation.

PG&E told state regulators last week that it experienced a problem on a transmission line in the area of the fire just before the blaze erupted.

Cal Fire Captain Nick Wallingford, lead for damage inspection for the Camp Fire, says the agency's new map allows residents to check on the status of their homes in the Paradise, Concow and Magalia areas. The company reported a $1 billion net loss in the second quarter of this year, driven by almost $1.6 billion in wildfire costs, and net income of $550 million for the third quarter.

President Donald Trump has requested a major disaster declaration for California, after taking flack for blaming the devastation on poor forestry management over the weekend.


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