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Wildfires in California, Oregon, Washington turn deadly: ‘I never want to see California again’

Wildfires in California, Oregon, Washington turn deadly: ‘I never want to see California again’

John BaconTrevor HughesUSA TODAYView Comments0:030:31https://imasdk.googleapis.com/js/core/bridge3.408.0_en.html#goog_1879531242

SHAVER LAKE, Calif. — Wildfires driven by strong winds were racing through more than a dozen Western states Thursday, taking lives and scarring a swath of land almost as big as Connecticut.

At least seven people have died as more than 90 major fires burn through 13 Western states.

“Firefighters across the Western states are seeing extreme fire behavior,” the National Fire Information Center. Three deaths have been reported in California, three in Oregon and one in Washington state. 

In Northern California’s Butte County, Sheriff Kory Honea said at least three people have died, 12 are missing, and hundreds of homes are feared destroyed by the North Complex Fire above San Francisco. Thousands more homes were threatened.

Several people have been critically burned and  20,000 people were under evacuation orders or warnings in Plumas, Yuba and Butte counties. Thick smoke completely blocked sunlight  in some large areas, and distant flames turned the sky orange in others.

“Time and time again we have seen how dangerous wildfires can be. … So I ask that you please, please please be prepared, maintain situational awareness and heed the warnings,” Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea pleaded.

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