Published: Fri, November 09, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Infernal wildfire visible from space sends California residents fleeing (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

Infernal wildfire visible from space sends California residents fleeing (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

McLean said that by the middle of the day, there was so much smoke in the air, it looked like it was nighttime. "The wind that was predicted came and just wiped it out". He estimated that a couple of thousand structures were destroyed in the town about 180 miles (290 kilometers) northeast of San Francisco. The extent of the injuries and damage was not immediately known.

Pacific Gas and Electric Company said about 14,000 residents of Butte and Plumas counties were without power due to fire activity and requests from firefighters to cut electricity in certain areas for safety, Sacramento Bee reported.

As she fled, Gina Oviedo described a devastating scene in which flames engulfed homes, sparked explosions and toppled utility poles.

"By the time we got out, the flames were a half mile away from the school".

Butte County Sherriff Kory Honea told the Chico Enterprise-Record that "it's bad". "I don't know. When I left it was all on fire". We're working very hard to get people out.

With a blaze in Butte County reddening the Berkeley skies and a fire in Oakland prompting full response from its fire department, Berkeley Fire Department is sending engines for support.

A pair of rapidly intensifying wildfires in Ventura County, California, are forcing thousands of evacuations and already burning structures.

Meanwhile, the intensifying Woolsey Fire in Oak Park, northwest of Los Angeles, quadrupled in size in just hours, reports CBS News' John Blackstone.

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Camp Fire in Butte County Red circles on this live-updating map are actively burning areas, as detected by satellite. The whole hill's on fire.

"We hope the winds will die down around midnight", he said.

Groups of fleeing residents gathered in a Kmart parking lot in Paradise, with their dogs and some with horses, waiting to be evacuated, said Shelley Freeman who spoke to a relative and friends in Paradise.

Kelly Lee called shelters looking for her husband's 93-year-old grandmother, Dorothy Herrera, who was last heard from on Thursday morning.

"We've just been posting all over social media".

"Right now, Mother Nature is in charge", Bennett said. 'There are dozens of strike teams that we're bringing in from all parts of the state'. Residents abandoned vehicles and ran from the flames carrying children and pets, officials said. One of them was on fire, and some cars were driving through it, but she didn't want to chance it with the children in the vehicle, he said. It's very surreal. Things always work out, but the unknown is a little scary. "The message I want to get out is if you can evacuate, you need to evacuate", Honea said.

The fire was reported shortly after daybreak in a rural area. Within roughly six hours, the fire had grown to more than 26 square miles (69 square kilometers), said Gaddie.

She captured photos of low-hanging black smoke stretching for miles as she and her boyfriend evacuated Paradise.

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