California Firefighters Work 48-Hour Shifts to Battle Deadly Blaze

California Firefighters Work 48-Hour Shifts to Battle Deadly Blaze

A fire truck drives along Highway 299 as the Carr fire continues to burn near Whiskeytown, California on Saturday.

Some evacuations orders have been lifted around a Northern California wildfire area near the city of Redding.

The towering flames were bearing down Redding.

The erratic flames are blamed for six deaths, including 70-year-old Melody Bledsoe and her great-grandchildren, 4-year-old Emily Roberts and 5-year-old James Roberts.

"I would've liked to have went in there and died with them", Ed Bledsoe, Melody Bledsoe's widower, said in a tearful interview with CNN aired on Monday in which he described his final phone call with his family as the flames closed in. The fire is just 5 percent contained. Come on grandpa, ' Bledsoe said, his voice choking.

"Everyone we come into contact [with] in those neighborhoods, if they don't have a legitimate reason to be there, if we don't arrest them for looting, they'll be arrested for something else", he said.

He couldn't get there in time to save them.

A firefighter lights backfires during the Carr fire in Redding, Calif., on July 27, 2018.

"There has been a fourth victim identified as a result of the fire consuming a residence and a decedent located in that residence", Bosenko said.

"My babies are dead", Sherry Bledsoe said as she cried with family members after meeting with sheriff's deputies, the Associated Press reported.

"We were out in 10 minutes". "I don't know why, but it just didn't torch off".

Macken, who is retired, told AFP that she met other panic-stricken neighbours at a nearby shopping centre - and watched from afar as her home went up in flames.

In December, Governor Jerry Brown said devastating wildfires fuelled by climate change had become "the new normal", and that large fires "could happen every year or every few years".

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The latest evacuations included about 1,000 people in Mendocino County, Undersherriff Matthew Kendall said today.

A thick smoke haze covered a large segment of northern California, severely limiting visibility and contributing to breathing problems.

The firefighter with emergency response company GFP Enterprises was leading a 20-person crew tackling the Ferguson Fire near Yosemite National Park last Thursday when his own neighborhood was hit by the deadly Carr Fire near Redding, California, six hours north.

In all, more than 10,000 people were under mandatory evacuation orders from the two blazes in Mendocino and Lake counties. Authorities were also investigating at least 18 reports of missing people, though many of them may simply have failed to check in with friends or family, police said.

"Did you get any sort of evacuation warning?"

The alleged burglars were tracked down and found with electronic items stacked by their front door, the sheriff's department said.

Redding Police Chief Roger Moore kept up an around-the-clock work schedule despite learning that his home was one of those destroyed. "Please don't be afraid of her - she is lost and scared!"

The blaze remained unpredictable, he said by telephone from Redding.

Wildfires across California have forced more than 50,000 people from their homes, said Lynne Tolmachoff, a Cal Fire spokeswoman.

Romero said there are still many uncertainties that could cause the fire to explode.

"We're feeling a lot more we're starting to make up some ground instead of being on the defensive", he told reporters.

The weather on Sunday is expected to offer no relief for firefighters as it will hit more than 100 Fahrenheit with low humidity and gusty winds, the National Weather Service said.