Overnight, Northern California saw several intense wildfires appear seemingly out of nowhere. The hellish conditions are heavily focused in Napa County, where the blazes spread quickly with no signs of slowing. Maps show the spread and potential damage at play, and the fires have already swallowed at least 100 acres apiece with the Tubbs fire claiming over 20,000 acres so far. The one word that keeps popping up everywhere — in reports and on social media — is how these blazes are “apocalyptic” in nature.
Strong winds mean that firefighters will struggle to make progress over the coming days, and California Governor Jerry Brown has issued an emergency declaration for three counties — Napa, Sonoma, and Yuba — while current estimates say that over 1,500 structures have already been destroyed. Here’s part of Brown’s proclamation:
“These fires have destroyed structures and continue to threaten thousands of homes, necessitating the evacuation of thousands of residents,” the proclamation said. “These fires have damaged and continue to threaten critical infrastructure and have forced the closure of major highways and local roads.”
Evacuations are ongoing throughout all three countries as people flee for safety while hoping they’ll have homes when all is said and done. Meanwhile, photographers on the scene (including residents, from up close and afar) are capturing incredible and terrifying images of the infernos as they rage.