Northern California’s Camp Fire is the worst wildfire the state has ever seen. The death toll is now at over 70 people. As of November 19, almost 1,000 people were reported missing. Rescue workers are searching through hundreds of destroyed neighborhoods to find people and thousands of residents have been displaced from their homes.
Why Did the Missing Number List Increase So Dramatically?
The increase in missing people came after authorities searched through a week of incident reports and 911 calls. Relatives have also reported family members and loved ones as missing. Investigators combined both sources of evidence to conclude that hundreds of people are still unaccounted for.
By early Friday, November 16, the Camp Fire was only 45 percent contained after it leveled around 140,000 acres throughout Northern California. National Guard troops, deputies, coroners, and local law enforcement officers are looking through destroyed vehicles and homes to find anything possible. According to survivors, many Camp Fire victims didn’t get emergency alerts. For those who did receive alerts, they were sent too late. Many people who were able to evacuate can’t be reached due to poor cell phone service in the area.
Families who have lost their homes are having a difficult time finding a temporary or permanent place to live. Ten percent of Butte County’s housing stock was erased in one day. An outbreak of a norovirus has affected four major shelters, according to the Butte County Public Health Department, which has left over 140 people sick.
The devastation through Butte County has ravaged thousands of homes and displaced many residents. For updates on the California fires, follow our blog, Facebook and Twitter pages at Mary Alexander & Associates, P.C.