‘Camp Fire’ forces evacuations in Northern California

‘Camp Fire’ forces evacuations in Northern California

"It's very chaotic. It's a very bad fire", Officer Ryan Lambert of the California Highway Patrol said of the evacuation.

"Every engine that we could put on the fire is on the fire right now, and more are coming", he said.

California is experiencing one of its worst fire years ever, with 251,610 hectares burned through Sunday in areas covered by Cal Fire, almost twice the amount during the same period of 2017 and almost triple the five-year average.

Officials at the Butte County Sheriff's office and Cal Fire, the state agency responsible for fighting wildfires, ordered evacuations throughout the morning for rural communities in the path of the wildfire, including Paradise, California, which is home to more than 26,000 people.

Butte County supervisor Doug Teeter said authorities used a bulldozer to push abandoned cars out the way to reach Feather River Hospital and evacuate patients as flames engulfed its old wing and the roof of the emergency department.

Google Maps continues to update its 2018 California fire map on the various blazes, as well as a Google Crisis Map with information about specific California wildfires including the Camp Fire.

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"We're getting them on other vehicles with room". It's very surreal. Things always work out, but the unknown is a little scary.

Fire officials were working on a plan to rescue patients from a hospital after officials tried to evacuate them but had to turn back because of gridlocked traffic. "The message I want to get out is if you can evacuate, you need to evacuate", Honea said.

"When this fire started this morning wind speeds were 35 to 40 miles per hour gusts", Cal Fire spokesperson Lynne Tolmachoff said. Dry, windy conditions are making it hard to contain the fire.

The Adventist Health Feather River Hospital in Paradise evacuated all its patients and staff, given its close proximity to the fire, and transported them safely to hospitals in neighboring towns, Jill Kinney, an Adventist Health spokeswoman told the Associated Press. 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.

The "Camp Fire" - as named by local officials - is expected to grow because of high winds and current dry conditions in the area.

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