Sunday, November 11

California wildfires death toll now 31 but finding incinerated bodies won't be easy UPDATED 2:55 am ET 11/12

From NBC News, 6:01 PM ET:
The remains of six more people were found in the Northern California town of Paradise after the Camp Fire swept through the area, bringing the total number of deaths related to the blaze to 29 and matching the deadliest fire in state history, authorities said Sunday.
The latest fatalities brought the statewide death toll to 31, after the Woolsey Fire in Southern California killed two people.
Butte County Sheriff Kory L. Honea told reporters that five bodies in Paradise were found in homes and one was found in a vehicle.
From an Associated Press report, More bodies found as officials fight California wildfire published about an hour ago.
In Northern California, Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea said the county consulted anthropologists from California State University at Chico because, in some cases, investigators have been able to recover only bones and bone fragments.
The devastation was so complete in some neighborhoods that “it’s very difficult to determine whether or not there may be human remains there,” Honea said.
Authorities were also bringing in a DNA lab and encouraged people with missing relatives to submit samples to aid in identifying the dead after the blaze destroyed more than 6,700 buildings, nearly all of them homes.
The passages address an aspect of the Camp wildfire that is Grenfell Tower all over again. The Grenfell fire burned so hot on the upper stories of the apartment tower that trapped residents were incinerated -- cremated; there was nothing left of them to I.D., except in some cases bone fragments. The Camp wildfire that tore through Paradise in the north of California burned so hot that the same thing happened in certain cases. 

How many cases? Nobody is trying to guess at this time; all that's known is that there are still about 100 people missing, most if not all from the Camp fire in Paradise. (A local press outlet puts the number at 228 see update below.) 

Authorities have already located about 400 people who went missing during the chaos of frantic evacuations from the town. Cell phone service is still down and roads are impassable in many areas where the Camp wildfire has continued to burn in the north. 

So people who managed to make it out of Paradise and other areas where the Camp fire struck could be scattered throughout shelters or still be taking refuge with strangers across a wide area that's hard for searchers to get to at this point, let alone closely inspect.

local press outlet puts the missing (from the Camp fire) at 228 although this number might include people who lived outside Paradise but near the Camp fire zone.  


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