Reports coming out of the Plumas National Forest in California indicate that wildfires are consuming thousands of acres of trees as fierce winds drive them into populated areas.
Paramedics and first responders are searching the region and have found at least five people "severely burned" after being trapped. Butte County Sheriff's Office also said that three people have died and 12 people are missing as a result of the fires.
The winds have been wreaking havoc with efforts to contain the wildfires, which are ripping through thick coniferous pine forests and climbing steep terrain. The fires are burning as fast as 1,000 acres every half hour.
"[Tuesday] morning around 10 a.m., the fire jumped the middle fork of the Feather River Canyon, around the area of Horseshoe Bar, and that initial spot in 30 minutes grew to 1,000 acres," fire incident management spokeswoman Amber Anderson, explained. "With the northwest winds, the fire has grown 15,000 to 20,000 acres."
UCLA climate scientist Daniel Swain took to Twitter to warn anyone in the vicinity to take the "extreme rate of spread" on this fire "extremely seriously."
Mandatory evacuations have been given for a large number of communities and neighborhoods. A complete list is available here.