California’s famed wine country area was plagued by raging fires on Monday, October 9. The wind caused the fires to spread to the neighboring counties forcing the government to conduct massive evacuations in the area.
The state Governor Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency. The reports have estimated that at least 1,500 homes and commercial buildings were destroyed in the fire.
California’s Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Director, Ken Pimlott, stated that at least 20,000 people had been evacuated. He added that the 14 large fires are zero percent contained.
Reports state that thousands were left stranded without proper access to food, water or power.
A spokesperson from Pacific Gas and Electric made a statement to The Associated Press saying 114,000 customers were stranded without power.
So far, the raging fires have resulted in the death of at least 10 people. Director Pimlott said, that other fatalities were expected but the damaged areas have proven difficult to assess as the fires continue their destruction.
According to reports by the San Francisco Chronicle, over a 100 people were treated for burns and smoke inhalation.
A citizen of Santa Rosa told KTVU that people seemed to have lost all control over themselves. He stated, “It’s a scary time, it looks like Armageddon.”
In an attempt to create order in the mayhem, the city of Santa Rosa enacted a curfew from sunset to sunrise in mandatory evacuation zones. Officials stated that person refusing to leave the area would be subject to stop and potential arrest.
The National Weather Service has issued a warning of dangerous conditions continuing until early Tuesday.
The fires have caused much damage and may cause more, with thick smoke beginning to form in San Francisco, 60 miles south of the Sonoma County fire.