At least eight people were put on the missing list on Saturday as United States’ California, which is currently battling one of the worst wildfires ever witnessed in the state. The fire has engulfed areas of Northern California, mainly in the Sierra Nevada mountains.
The numbers were released after a day of relief for the firefighters, whose efforts were aided by the less windy weather. Pulmas County’s Sheriff’s Office made the announcement about the missing people.
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“We have received reports of eight unaccounted-for individuals” the statement read, according to reports from Reuters. The Sheriff’s Office also urged the public to aid the efforts of law enforcement authorities in finding the missing individuals.
The fire, which has been dubbed as ‘the Dixie wildfire’ is reportedly the third-worst that has ever scorched the state of California.
Five out of eight missing individuals are from the town of Greenville, which is known for its heavy mining activities. The town of Greenville, which is located about 160 miles from California’s capital city Sacramento.
Swollen by one-dry vegetation and 40 mph (64 kph) gusts raged through Greenville, Sierra Nevada. “We lost Greenville tonight,” Rep Doug LaMalfa said in an emotional Facebook video. “There’s just no words.”
The town, which dates to California’s Gold Rush era witnessed the demolition of several buildings. Photos and videos shared on social media suggest that the destruction was widespread. The blaze has already destroyed at least 67 structures, USA Today reported.
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Firefighter and spokesperson for California’s fire department Edwin Zuniga said in a statement, “We’re hoping to gain ground. There are favorable weather conditions, with less wind and a blanket of smoke that blocks direct sunlight. It allows a higher humidity which helps us”, according to reports from Reuters.
The Dixie Fire has so far levelled 447,000 acres of land while only 21% of it has been contained by mid afternoon, Zuniga explained.