Wednesday, 22 August, 2018

Children, Great-Grandmother Perish In California Wildfire

The Carr Fire burns along Highway 299 in Redding Calif. on Thursday The Carr Fire burns along Highway 299 in Redding Calif. on Thursday
Leonard Rios | 30 July, 2018, 14:35

Another person was found dead after a fire consumed a house, Bosenko said Sunday.

Bosenko said Sunday that 16 people have so far been reported missing over the course of the fire.

Crews stretched to their limits across the state are fighting flames that have claimed the lives of two firefighters and six civilians.

Two firefighters have also been killed in the blaze.

The bulldozer operator was identified by the Shasta County Sheriff's Department as Don Ray Smith of Pollock Pines.

Sherry Bledsoe's two children, James Roberts, 5, and Emily Roberts, 4, were stranded with their great-grandmother Melody Bledsoe, 70, when walls of flames swept through the family's rural property Thursday on the outskirts of Redding.

"Extreme fire conditions continue to challenge firefighters last night", Cal Fire said. Ed Bledsoe was out buying supplies to help others threatened by the wildfire when flames engulfed his home, KGO reported.

"It's a hard fire to deal with", Austin said, noting the weather was hot and the terrain rugged.

Two firefighters have also died and another 12 people are missing. As of Saturday morning, those fires had burned almost 160,000 acres and destroyed over 500 structures. "As this fire was just exploding, it's just been inching closer and closer and closer to the station to the point where there was a neighborhood up in flames just about a mile away from the station, just across from the Sacramento River", Damante said during an interview on "Good Morning America" early Friday.

In the past year, neighborhoods in the northern California wine country city of Santa Rosa and the southern California beach city of Ventura have been devastated.

Bollman took hundreds of photos, recorded video, texted his wife and hiked out.

Firefighters discuss plans while battling the Carr Fire in Shasta Calif. on Thursday
Firefighters discuss plans while battling the Carr Fire in Shasta Calif. on Thursday

Wildfires around the state have forced roughly 50,000 people from their homes, said Lynne Tolmachoff, a Cal Fire spokeswoman.

"We're feeling a lot more optimistic today as we're starting to gain some ground rather than being in a defensive mode on this fire all the time", he said at a news conference, adding that the fire had not grown inside the city since Saturday.

The Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco is also checking the situation of Filipinos in Redding and surrounding areas to determine whether any of them has been affected by the so-called Carr Fire.

The Ferguson Fire in Mariposa County has burned 53,646 acres and is 30% contained. Authorities had not reopened any evacuated neighbourhoods where fires raged due to safety and ongoing investigations.

California department of forestry and fire protection (CalFire) chief Ken Pimlott told reporters "This fire was whipped up into a whirlwind of activity" by gale-force winds, he said, "uprooting trees, moving vehicles, moving parts of roadways". That was well above average for the same period over the past 10 years but down from 5.27 million acres (2.13 million hectares) in the first seven months of 2017, NIFC reported.

"They go into the steepest of the steep, the most rugged of the rugged areas", said Mike Theune, a spokesman with the parks. The winds that aided crews in keeping the flames from more populated areas were propelling the inferno at a frightening rate in unpredictable directions.

Officials said on Saturday that they had found the remains of three people - believed to be a woman and her two young great-grandchildren.

At least 517 buildings have been destroyed and a further 135 damaged, according to the latest figures.

Officials say at least 500 structures were destroyed by the Carr Fire, which also swept through the historic Gold Rush town of Shasta and hit homes in Redding, a city of 92,000 about 100 miles south of the OR border.

Anna Noland, who was evacuated twice in three days, learned Friday that she had lost her home.

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