At least 9 dead in wildfire that destroyed Paradise, California - Pop. 26000

A group of US Forest Service firefighters monitor a fire while battling to save homes at the Camp Fire in Paradise California

A group of US Forest Service firefighters monitor a fire while battling to save homes at the Camp Fire in Paradise California. Stephen Lam Reuters

The Camp Fire has destroyed 6,453 homes and 260 commercial buildings in the area around Paradise, making it the most destructive to buildings in state history, surpassing the Tubbs Fire, which destroyed 5,636 structures in Napa and Sonoma counties past year.

The fire has left nine people dead, the Butte County Sheriff's Office said Friday. Of those killed, five people were found in or near a vehicle and the other four were found in or outside a home. "When people get into a big hurry, fire department, sheriff's department, they move on instinct and their instinct is just get everyone out of harm's way and move 'em, move 'em, move 'em".

Two other fires broke out in southern California, one in Ventura County near Thousand Oaks, where a Marine Corps veteran shot dead 12 people in a country music bar on Wednesday night. Two people were reported killed. The flames turned what it touched to ash as it forced a citywide Malibu evacuation and sent residents scrambling to find a way out of the burn area.

Lady Gaga announced that she was evacuated from her home in Malibu. A blaze is also approaching LA Zoo.

At midday on Friday local time (20:00 GMT), it covered about 14,000 acres (5,665 hectares).

Representatives for Acting California Governor Gavin Newsom, a Democrat who was elected on Tuesday to replace Jerry Brown, could not immediately be reached for comment.

"There was really no firefight involved", McLean said, explaining that crews gave up on attacking the flames and instead helped people evacuate. Officials said two firefighters and multiple residents were injured. He found his home levelled - a large metal safe and some pipe work from his septic system the only recognizable traces. Authorities estimated that more than 6,000 structures were destroyed.

The flames descended on Paradise so quickly that many people were forced to abandon their cars and run for their lives down the sole road through the mountain town. "Our weather conditions out there, and our fuel conditions are absolutely right for fire ... when we ask you to leave, please leave early". Helicopters collect water from lakes and ponds to douse wildfires and have plenty at hand, they said.

The Woolsey Fire that started east of Simi Valley on Thursday and moved toward Los Angeles County has burned 70,000 acres, or 109 square miles, Cal Fire said Saturday. But by nightfall several homes had burned and authorities had ordered an evacuation.

Firefighters were searching burned-out neighbourhoods after two blazes that have already destroyed 150 homes.

Over the past decade, California has witnessed massive wildfires wreak havoc across the western state.

US President Donald Trump, however, threatened to suspend federal assistance to California, accusing the state of failing to prevent the fires.

"There is no reason for these massive, deadly and costly forest fires in California except that forest management is so poor", Trump tweeted Saturday. Trump said "billions of dollars are given each year, with so many lives lost, all because of gross mismanagement of the forests". It has cost $8.1 million to fight so far, said Steve Kaufmann, a spokesman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

"There were no firefighters in sight", Vaughan wrote on Facebook.

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