Published: Wed, November 14, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Hundreds still missing as California fires rage on

Hundreds still missing as California fires rage on

The death toll from the wildfire that incinerated Paradise and surrounding areas climbed to 29 - matching the mark for the deadliest single blaze in California history - as crews continued searching for bodies in the smoldering ruins, with almost 230 people unaccounted for. It is likely that crews assessing damage will discover hundreds more homes lost in the canyons and steep hillsides in inland and coastal areas, Los Angeles County Fire Chief Daryl Osby said.

The 42 dead in Northern California made this blaze the deadliest single fire on record, surpassing the toll from a 1933 blaze in Griffith Park in Los Angeles that killed 29.

"We have strong evidence of Southern California Edison's responsibility for the fire", said Alex Robertson, a plaintiff lawyer who also has brought cases against the utility over the mudslides that destroyed parts of coastal Montecito, California, past year as the result of wildfires. The Camp Fire has scorched more than 108,000 acres of land in Northern California, while the Woolsey Fire near Los Angeles has burned roughly 83,275 acres.

Investigators have determined that PG&E equipment started several of the 2017 wildfires in Northern California wine country that killed 44 people.

Roger Kelly, 69, defied evacuation orders Sunday and hiked into Seminole Springs, his lakeside mobile home community in the Santa Monica Mountains north of Malibu.

Meanwhile, the Times reported, the Hill fire, another Southern California fire, has pushed to the edge of Camarillo Springs and the Cal State Channel Islands.

There are still over 200 people missing according to the BBC, which suggests that more lives may have been taken by the deadly blaze.

Brown said federal and state governments could improve forest management, but said climate change with warmer temperatures was a bigger source of the fire hazard.

In an Instagram post, the star can be seen standing in front of a burnt out vehicle, which he captioned: "Returned to my house in Malibu after evacuating".

"These are extreme conditions".

The two dead were severely burned, their bodies discovered in a auto on a long residential driveway on a stretch of Mulholland Highway in Malibu, where most of the surrounding structures had burned. "It's all gone", Malibu resident Marcella Shirk, 82, told KABC-TV.

California utility stocks plummeted for a second trading day on Monday. Edison International, the owner of Southern California Edison Company, slumped 11 percent, leaving its stock market value $5 billion lower since Thursday when the fires broke out.

"Fires do not respect politics, though, so I would beg the President to pursue a major disaster declaration and not make this a political incident", Stern said.

Another added: "So sorry but so glad you're safe".

"Right now, what is needed is, really, support", Rice said.

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