Residents of Paradise, as well as the nearby communities of Concow, Magalia, Butte Creek Canyon, and Yankee Hill, are currently being evacuated due to the major campfire that is spreading throughout Butte County. The fire reportedly began at about 6:30 a.m. on Thursday, November 8, 2018, on Camp Creek Road close to Pulga. The fire quickly spread west toward the city of Paradise. Cal Fire reported at around 2:30 p.m. that 18,000 acres had been burned and that the fire remained at zero percent containment. At the time of reporting, a red flag warning remained in place.
Cal Fire public information officer, Rick Carhart, reported that the fire was exhibiting “extreme fire behavior,” and that firefighters had noted long-range spotting. Officials say that they are expecting steady winds of up to 35 miles per hour continuing to blow the fire westward.
Reports indicated that the fire was burning in Paradise as far as Skyway spanning the distance between Wagstaff and Buschman Roads. Carhart has reported major structure loss in Paradise, but could not confirm whether or not the fire had destroyed Paradise High School, the Feather River Hospital, or the local K-Mart. Radio reports indicated that the Paradise Town Hall started burning at around 2:30 p.m.
Witnesses and on-site reporters have described a scene of chaos as large numbers of people attempt to evacuate the city. Reports stated that multiple structures have burned and that at least two injured people have been flown to a hospital in Chico. One report indicated that a pregnant woman went into labor while stuck in traffic attempting to exit the area.
According to Butte County Sheriff, Kory Honea, officials are trying their best to evacuate as many individuals as quickly as they possibly can.
Officials staged evacuations in the burn area close to the West Branch of Feather River Canyon in the early morning and eventually ordered the evacuation of the entire city. So far, no other cities have been ordered to evacuate completely. Additionally, no evacuations were being considered for Chico. According to public information by authorities, the Feather River Hospital and Paradise schools were successfully evacuated.
The California Governer’s Office Department of Emergency Services reportedly activated their State Operations Center in order to assist Butte County agencies with handling evacuation, mutual aid, and emergency management needs. Evacuation centers were set up at Oroville Nazarene Church, the Chico Neighborhood Church, and at DeGarmo, Community, and Durham Parks in Chico. However, services are not available at the park locations. Evacuees have been asked to register themselves as safe on the Red Cross website. Those concerned about the well-being of their loved ones can visit this site for information.
In emergency situations, it is important to know how to evaluate and care for burn injuries. To learn some helpful information about responding to burn injuries, you can watch the below video.
More by Ed Smith, Paradise Wildfire Compensation Lawyer
- Economic Effects of California Wildfires
- How a Paradise Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help
- Rebuilding Communities After Wildfires
Paradise Wildfire Compensation Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Paradise wildfire compensation lawyer. If you or someone you love has been killed or injured because of a wildfire or in a preventable accident, contact me at (800) 404-5400 or (530) 392-9400 for free, friendly legal advice.
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Camp Fire Rages Through Butte County: Ed Smith
Photo: ab/ Camp Fire Rages Through Butte County
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