Dog teams be­gin grim search as Cal­i­for­nia wild­fires death toll rises

Evening Express (City Final) - - UK & Abroad -

TEAMS with dogs have be­gun a grim search for more dead in parts of Cal­i­for­nia wine coun­try dev­as­tated by wild­fires. Searchers re­sorted in some cases to us­ing se­rial num­bers stamped on med­i­cal im­plants to iden­tify re­mains that turned up in the charred ru­ins.

New deaths con­firmed yes­ter­day took the toll to 31, mak­ing it the dead­li­est week of wild­fires in Cal­i­for­nia his­tory. Many of the flames still burned out of con­trol, and the fires grew to more than 300 square miles, an area as large as New York City. Sonoma and Napa coun­ties en­dured a fourth day of chok­ing smoke while many res­i­dents fled to shel­ters or camped out on beaches to await word on their homes and loved ones. A fore­cast for gusty winds and dry air

threat­ened to fan the fires fur­ther. Some of the state’s most his­toric tourist sites, in­clud­ing Sonoma city and Cal­is­toga in Napa Val­ley, were ghost towns pop­u­lated only by fire crews try­ing to stop the ad­vanc­ing in­fer­nos.

Cal­is­toga mayor Chris Can­ning warned that the fires were draw­ing closer and all of the city’s 5,000 res­i­dents needed to heed an evac­u­a­tion or­der.

BlAze: A wild­fire – seen through a fire truck’s win­dows – which was burn­ing along High­way 29, near Cal­is­toga.

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