Local firefighters arrive in California as death toll from wildfires grows

Camp fire's death toll mounts in Paradise as the search for victims continues

The Woolsey Fire near Los Angeles has killed at least two and has scorched 83,275 acres.

More than 200 people were missing early on Monday in California's deadliest and most destructive blaze on record, one of two fires raging in the state which have killed at least 31 people and forced more than a quarter of a million evacuations. More are unaccounted for.

Authorities picking their way through burned-out neighborhoods say a Southern California wildfire has now destroyed at least 435 buildings, majority homes. It is approximately 25 percent contained.

"This is truly a tragedy that all Californians can understand and respond to, " Governor Jerry Brown said Sunday (local time).

Officials say more than 4,500 firefighters are on day four of their battle against the blaze. For a while, there was a lull in the strong winds in the region, but forecasters are predicting gusts as high as 64 kilometers per hour late Monday.

Some of the thousands of people who fled Southern California's huge wildfire were being allowed to return home, and traffic was flowing Monday on the major highway through the area after a closure of several days.

Many noted that the federal government owns almost half the land in California, and is overwhelmingly responsible for "forest management" in the vast acreage controlled by the U.S. Forest Service and National Park Service.

The town of Paradise is in a red flag fire warning zone, as is Thousand Oaks and towns just above Los Angeles.

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The positive developments come even though Monday's forecast calls for continuing critical fire danger due to gusty Santa Ana winds and extremely low humidity levels.

Fierce, dry winds were expected to fan the flames of deadly wilds burning in California on Monday, heightening the risk of fresh blazes from scattered embers and making driving conditions hard. "We know that there was a massive loss of life with these fires as we're hearing from the Sheriff's Office and so we're here to help and provide closure for families".

SunTrust analyst Ali Agha in a note to clients said the sell-off in Edison International was likely overdone because total acres and property burned so far in its territory were smaller than in fires previous year.

In Northern California, the best place to start is the North Valley Animal Disaster Group for monetary donations.

Ten search teams were working in Paradise - a town of 27,000 that was engulfed by flames Thursday - and in surrounding communities in Northern California's Sierra Nevada foothills.

In addition, the California Department of Justice deployed a mobile unit to help collect DNA from relatives of Camp Fire victims in order to positively identify the dead, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. But officials warned that the dry conditions that fuel the fire will continue during the week.

President Donald Trump's tweet blaming "gross mismanagement" for the devastating California wildfires is sparking a backlash from top firefighters' associations, politicians and celebrities.

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