Horse hid in pool to survive California wildfires

15 November, 2018, 07:30 | Author: Ethel Goodwin
  • Dogs roam burned out neighborhoods as the Camp fire tears through Paradise California

Zimmerman, a real estate appraiser, works for a California law firm that has repeatedly filed class action lawsuits against Pacific Gas & Electric and other utility companies, alleging their equipment failures caused many of California's horrific string of recent wildfires.

Most of those who remain unaccounted for are from Paradise, which was once home to 27,000 people but was largely incinerated last Thursday night in the killer blaze, dubbed the Camp Fire.

Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea updated the confirmed fatality number Monday night - a figure that is nearly certain to spike following the blaze that last week destroyed Paradise, a town of 27,000 about 180 miles (290 kilometers) northeast of San Francisco.

A landowner near where the fire began said PG&E notified her the day before the wildfire that crews needed to come onto her property because wires were sparking.

He has requested portable morgue teams from the U.S. military, as well as a disaster mortuary crew, additional cadaver dogs and forensic anthropology units.

"This is one of the worst disasters I've seen in my career, hands down", Brock Long, head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, told reporters in the nearby city of Chico.

What is the latest on the Camp Fire?

By Tuesday, the Camp Fire had blackened 50,500 hectares of drought-parched scrub, but crews had carved containment lines around almost a third of the fire's expanding perimeter.

"I was like, 'I think I'm done, '" said Allyn Pierce, a nurse who fled the fire in Paradise in his truck.




The fire has killed at least 56 people, destroyed more than 10,300 structures and scorched 138,000 acres in Butte County.

Red houses, indicating structures that were deemed more than 50% destroyed, fill an area on the map.

Chaplains accompanied some coroner search teams that visited dozens of addresses belonging to people reported missing.

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".

"This is a wind-driven event and the winds are coming back", Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department Chief John Benedict said, warning residents not to shelter in place.

Officials say that on top of thousands of homes, more than 250 local commercial buildings have fallen victim. Company spokesman Jason King said, "Nothing is more important than the safety of our customers, employees, contractors and the communities we serve".

More than 5,000 firefighters battling the blaze made gains overnight, slowing the flames' advance toward Oroville, a town of about 19,000 people. "Unfortunately, the best science is telling us that the dryness, warmth, drought, all those things, they're going to intensify", Brown said. Johnston said this was a reminder of what can happen to firefighters in windy conditions.

As for what caused the two deadly fires, that remains under investigation.

Stocks of California's two largest energy companies fell sharply on Monday, the Los Angeles Times reported, as investors anxious about where blame for the deadly fire will fall.

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