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Whole towns evacuated as Northern California firestorm grows; at least 23 people are dead, 285 missing

Posted on Thursday, October 12, 2017 at 8:40 am

(Los Angeles Times)
The death toll rose to 23 on Wednesday night from the rapidly spreading firestorm in California wine country as firefighters were battling the return of dangerous winds that sparked new evacuations.
All residents of Calistoga and Geyserville were ordered to leave their homes as firefighters braced for a tough fight overnight on numerous fronts of the fires. About 8:20 p.m., mandatory evacuations were also issued for parts of eastern Sonoma Valley, including Castle Road and 7th Street East north of Lovall Valley Road.
Napa city officials issued evacuation advisories for neighborhoods along the eastern edges of the city, warning residents to be prepared to leave. Just before 9 p.m., Santa Rosa police also issued an evacuation advisory for neighborhoods in the city’s eastern end, while other neighborhoods along the north end of the city are under mandatory evacuation orders.
“The fire is not an imminent threat, but the conditions may change quickly,” police said.
In Sonoma County alone, 25,000 people have evacuated, county spokesman Scott Alonso said late Wednesday.
“If there’s been a mandatory evacuation, you cannot go home,” Alonso said. “The area is unsafe.”
Something to think about…If you had only 10 minutes to evacuate, what would you take?