California's 48,000-acre Carr Fire has killed two of the 3,400 firefighters battling the blaze in and around the city of Redding. The wildfire began just six days ago, sparked by the "mechanical failure of a vehicle," local authorities said. It has been exacerbated by low humidity and high winds, with gusts creating "firenadoes" capable of overturning cars.
"I couldn't even describe it other than it was the apocalypse," said Redding resident Justin Montes. "It was exactly what that would be like — intense heat."
The fire is "taking everything down in its path," said Scott McLean, a representative of the firefighters at the site, describing the situation as "a heck of a fight." Nine other people are missing, and 38,000 have evacuated their homes. About 500 structures have been destroyed, and another 5,000 are still threatened. The fire is just 5 percent contained.