Late Thursday, more than 2,200 firefighters were battling the flames and the Camp Fire remains completely uncontained, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire). People in some neighborhoods have been told to get out.
Reporter Laura Anthony, of the local ABC station KGO, shot video of a "firenado" in Paradise Thursday. He said the fast-moving flames forced fire crews to shelter people at a Walgreens and other locations until flames passed through. The fire was spreading at a rapid rate after it sparked around 6:30 a.m., expanding from 1,000 to 18,000 acres in a matter of hours.
Humboldt is one of many California counties contributing to the firefighting efforts in Butte County where the Camp Fire has burned over 70,000 acres in just over a day leaving the town of Paradise in ruins.
Emergency personnel evacuate patients as the Feather River Hospital burns while the Camp Fire rages through Paradise, Calif., on Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018. About 15,000 structures are threatened, but the number of structures destroyed is not known.
Cal Fire Captain - John Gaddie - said the town of just 27,000 was "destroyed" by the flames.
The National Weather Service had predicted risky fire weather conditions in California because of Santa Ana winds, which roar in from the east and accelerate down California's north-to-south-oriented mountain slopes. Butte County CalFire Chief Darren Read said at a news conference that two firefighters and multiple residents were injured.
Whitney Vaughan described a scene of panic and terror as she recalled her narrow escape from her Paradise home on Thursday morning.
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The Ventura County Fire Department has also ordered evacuation of some communities in the path of the fire, which erupted a few miles from the site of Wednesday night's deadly mass shooting at a Thousand Oaks bar. Even though Chico is more than 150 miles north of San Francisco, a smoke advisory has been issued for the entire Bay Area, as well as other parts of Northern California.
On social media many people posted anxious messages about elderly relatives who lived near the fire and were missing, urging authorities to assist them in evacuating.
The National Weather Service had predicted unsafe fire weather conditions in California because of Santa Ana winds, which roar in from the east and accelerate down California's north-to-south-oriented mountain slopes.
Just 12 minutes after it started Thursday afternoon, the flames spread across United States 101, leaving several drivers temporarily stranded.
Further north near Sacramento, the five victims were found in cars in a town that was destroyed by the Camp Fire.
Allana Hall said this marks the second time she has fled a California fire.
At least one nursing home and hospital were evacuated and several homes were on fire, according to the Sacramento Bee, and the region is covered with thick, dark smoke.