As a wildfire continues to rage in Northern California, one official gave a bleak update on the status of one town that was engulfed by the blazes.
“Pretty much the community of Paradise is destroyed, it’s that kind of devastation,” said Cal Fire Capt. Scott McLean late Thursday.
McLean estimated that a couple of thousand structures were destroyed in the town of 27,000 residents about 300 kilometres northeast of San Francisco, was ordered to get out.
“The wind that was predicted came and just wiped it out,” McLean said.
Tens of thousands of people were ordered to flee the fast-moving flames — dubbed the Camp Fire by officials — that exploded in size Thursday morning.
With Paradise located on a ridge and escape routes limited, traffic accidents turned roads into gridlock. Residents abandoned vehicles and ran from the flames carrying children and pets, officials said.
The extent of the injuries and specific damage count was not immediately known as officials could not access the dangerous area.