At least 17 wildfires blaze through Northern California’s wine country, leaving formerly picturesque parts of the region blackened, charred and resembling scenes from an apocalyptic film.
Fueled by strong winds and dry conditions, the fires have already swept across about 119,000 acres, destroying some 2,000 structures and sparking mass evacuations. At least 15 people are dead and 100 injured. Authorities said they had received about 150 missing persons reports.
The flames scorched 20,000 acres in 12 hours on Monday alone ― a rate of more than a football field every three seconds, CNN points out.
Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency on Monday for Napa, Sonoma and Yuba counties.
Vice President Mike Pence visited Northern California on Tuesday. He praised firefighters “who are literally putting their lives on the line to protect the people of California and protect property.” He announced President Donald Trump had approved a “major disaster declaration” to support the response.
Below, take a look at some before-and-after photos that reveal the vast, ongoing devastation.
A Fountaingrove Village homeowner reacts as he surveys his destroyed home he has owned for four years in Santa Rosa, California.
A firefighter works to put out hot spots on a fast moving wind-driven wildfire in Orange, California.
A burned vehicle in Hidden Valley.
A firefighter puts out a hot spot that flared up in a destroyed neighborhood in Santa Rosa.
Smoke and water stream through the roof of a home destroyed by the Canyon Fire 2 in Anaheim Hills.
A police officer looks over the destruction of a home in Santa Rosa.
Residents use their phones to record firefighters in Orange, California.