Breaking News – Carpinteria (NEWZ247) Fire continued to tear across Southern California on Thursday, surrounding communities and shrouding much of the region in searing flame and thick, choking smoke.
And where there was no fire, there was fear.Fear of what could come next as wildfires ravaged the state for a fourth day. Fear of what could happen if the winds shifted, if the flames moved, if new blazes erupted and were strengthened by the powerful gusts already fueling the .
Tens of thousands of people fled their homes, running from fires without any idea of when they could return or what they might find when they do. They grabbed pets, clothes and mementos before hurrying off in search of shelter.
Veteran firefighters described some of the blazes — at least five separate fires in the region — as unlike anything they had ever encountered. Thousands of firefighters and other first responders fanned out to save lives, protect homes and shepherd people to safety, joined by reinforcements that flocked in from other parts of the country.
Authorities had not reported any deaths due to the blazes by Thursday, but they spoke bluntly about the danger that remained through week’s end. While the most severe winds are forecast to slacken Friday and Saturday, lessening the fire danger some, the National Weather Service cautions through Sunday as conditions remain abnormally dry and breezy.
“We are a long way from being out of this weather event,” Ken Pimlott, director of Cal Fire, said at a briefing Thursday. “In some cases, the worst could be yet to come in terms of the wind.”