Raging California wildfires threaten almost 10K more homes

Raging California wildfires threaten almost 10K more homes

Among the dead were two firefighters and a 70-year-old woman and her two great-grandchildren, who died when the fire swept through their home in Redding, California.

The latest tally showed 517 destroyed structures and another 135 damaged, Mr Romero said, with the vast majority believed to be homes.

Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko said he expects to find several of those people alive and just out of touch with loved ones.

The Carr fire is burning so large and intensely that it created its own localized weather system, making it hard for experts to predict which way the blaze will spread.

Six people have been confirmed killed and seven others have been missing since last Thursday. "That's all I can say".

Authorities in California have reported levels of fire intensity and unpredictability they have seldom seen before. The sixth victim, who was not identified, did not evacuate despite receiving a warning, authorities said. The Carr Fire was 23 percent contained as of Monday night, up from about 17 percent on Sunday, as fire crews raced to smother the massive blaze before the weather turned against them. The weather remains hot, dry and windy, and firefighters are doing all they can to stop keep the flames from moving from the hills to homes. Ferguson has blackened almost 56,700 acres and is 30 percent contained, Cal Fire reports. In some areas, thousands of tired residents were allowed to return home.

The fire's northwestern corner continued to be active. "If there's a fire that comes into an area like this, you can't put personnel in here", Cal Fire's Will Powers said.

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The fire that threatened Redding - a city of about 92,000 - was ignited by a vehicle problem a week ago about 10 miles (16 kilometers) west of the city. "Shifting winds, dry fuels and steep drainages contributed to rapid growth". It then jumped the Sacramento River and took out subdivisions on the western edge of Redding. State fire spokesman Scott McLean says it's the ninth most destructive wildfire in state history.

The fire slowed down as winds subsided, and crews were able to get into neighborhoods to prevent embers from taking out additional homes, he said.

Ed Bledsoe had just left to run an errand when he received a phone call.

Come back, she told him, because the fire was closing in on their home. "The aircraft, the helicopters that are working this fire, that is the best approach to fight a fire like this". When he tried to return, the road was blocked and flames prevented him from returning on foot.

"Right now it's going everywhere", he said.

The drawback of the automated calling system is that it is created to dial landlines, but cellphone users must register their phones if they are to receive alerts, she said.

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