Number of missing in California fire doubles to more than 600

Number of missing in California fire doubles to more than 600

Almost 8,700 homes have been destroyed and 15,500 buildings threatened, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) said on Thursday.

The search for victims of a catastrophic blaze that reduced a northern California town to ashes has intensified as authorities posted an expanded list of almost 600 people reported missing in the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California history.

Authorities have attributed the high number of fatalities in part to the staggering speed with which the wind-driven flames raced through Paradise, a town of 27,000 residents.

TRT World's Ediz Tiyansan reports from California.

Thousands of additional structures were still threatened by the blaze, and as many as 50,000 people remained under evacuation orders.

Across the state, more than 9,000 firefighters are involved in the fight to contain the fires.

"You have to understand, this is a dynamic list", Butte County Sheriff and Coroner Kory Honea said Thursday evening.

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The cause of the fires are being investigated.

There has been an outbreak of norovirus at a shelter housing people who left their homes to escape the Camp Fire, according to a Butte County public health spokeswoman.

The Camp fire is now by far the worst wildfire in California history.

The White House has said Donald Trump will visit California on Saturday to meet people affected by the disaster.

Information for contacting the Federal Emergency Management Agency for assistance was posted on a board that allowed people to write the names of those they believed were missing. Evacuees are asked to check the boards to see if their names appear.

"But there is sometimes an image of Malibu that people like me are more than other people, and there's a lot of people who need help from outside from you", Martin told the board.

"We didn't have any time to react", Eric said. There were portable toilets, and some people used the Walmart restrooms. "It just happened so quick". "I feel like people are going to come into our tent". "I've been holding it together for her", he said, gesturing toward his wife.

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