Authorities searching through the blackened aftermath of California's deadliest wildfire Wednesday released the names of some 130 people who are unaccounted for, including many in their 80s and 90s, and said dozens more could still be missing.
Officials in Northern California said Tuesday that search crews had found six more bodies, bringing the death toll from the so-called Camp Fire to 56 and the statewide total to 59.
As the names of the missing were made public, more crews joined the search. "We want to be able to cover as much ground as quickly as we possibly can," Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea said. "This is a very difficult task."
A sheriff's department spokeswoman, Megan McMann, acknowledged that the list of the missing was incomplete. She said detectives were concerned about being overwhelmed with calls from relatives if the entire list were released.
A new lawsuit blames the fire on a major utility, Pacific Gas & Electric, for allegedly failing to inspect and properly maintain its power lines. In a statement, PG&E said customer safety was its "highest priority" and it's focusing on helping first responders.
Five hundred miles south, firefighters have made progress battling the "Woolsey Fire," passing the 50-percent containment mark. Some neighborhoods were reopened, and residents were able to see if their homes survived.
California wildfires fast facts
Firefighters are battling two major wildfires in California. Here's a breakdown by the numbers as of Wednesday evening, according to Cal Fire and local officials.
- Location: Butte County
- 138,000 acres burned
- 35 percent contained
- 56 fatalities confirmed
- 10,321 structures destroyed (including homes)
- Location: Los Angeles County, Ventura County
- 98,362 acres burned
- 52 percent contained
- 3 fatalities confirmed
- 435 structures destroyed, 57,000 in danger
Fundraiser brings in more than $1 million
CBS Los Angeles teamed up with the Los Angeles Rams and the United Way to raise money for victims of the massive wildfires in Los Angeles and Ventura counties, and Wednesday's day-long effort brought in more than $1.1 million.
Celebrities including Robin Thicke, Stephanie Weir, Pauley Perrette, Heather Tom and John McCook helped out at the phone bank, along with Galaxy player Daniel Steres and Rams legends Eric Dickerson and Jackie Slater.
Even though the telethon ended late Wednesday night, you can still donate.
CBS L.A. sent a special thank you all the volunteers who pitched in as well as the Annenberg Foundation, Dole Food Company, Edison International, IBM, JPMorgan Chase, Sikand Foundation and 21st Century Fox for generous donations.
Barrett Foa from "NCIS: Los Angeles" said the cast pledged $10,000 after seeing Foa's appearance during the telethon earlier in the day and starting a text message chain.
Two sisters visited CBS L.A. during the fundraiser to donate their last $20, despite their having fallen on hard times.
Firefighter hit by car
CBS Los Angeles' Mike Rogers reports a firefighter battling the Woolsey Fire has been injured:
California wildfire map
New death toll from Camp Fire at 56
9 p.m. ET: As of Wednesday night, eight more human remains have been found, bringing the death toll to 56. Six of them were found inside structures and two were found outside. Statewide, the death toll is 59 (including three from the Woolsey Fire).
There have been more than 10,000 structures destroyed by the Camp Fire, including homes. The total amount of evacuated residents remains at 52,000 people.
The Camp Fire containment remains at 35 percent. Some 138,000 acres have been scorched.
A National Weather Service meteorologist said light winds over the valley will continue the poor air quality in the region. There may be some relief Saturday night when stronger winds push the air out.
The California Highway Patrol said it has cleared vehicles from roads in Chico.
The Butte County sheriff's office said at least 130 people are reported "unaccounted." A list has made public here.
The sheriff's office said 287 additional search and rescue personnel have joined the search for human remains, joining 50 California National Guard troops. A total of 461 people are part of the search and rescue effort.
Peter Martinez contributed to this report.
Jeff Hill joins CBSN to describe his rescue of a mule during wildfire
Jeff Hill of Paradise, California, joined CBSN over the phone Wednesday night to describe his rescue of a mule he found trapped in a pool as the wildfire raged in the community.
He had posted pictures of the mule on Facebook and they have since gone viral.
Hill told CBSN he had lost his own home in Paradise, but found a glimpse of hope as he came to the mule's rescue.
The horse "had the look of defeat in her eyes," Hill wrote on Facebook. But thanks to the pool, she was spared from the deadliest wildfire in California history.
Woolsey Fire devastates Southern California
CBS News correspondent Jamie Yuccas reports from Southern California where the Woolsey Fire has destroyed homes from the hillside to coast.
Residents are reeling as they find their homes in ruins and their community in rubble.
How to help victims of the wildfires
KCBS-TV and KCAL-TV are holding a fundraiser Wednesday, Nov. 14 from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. You can donate here.
You can also call 818-821-1080 or text "2018FIRES" to 41444.
A full list of other ways to help can be found here.
Interior chief: Now is "not the time to point fingers"
U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said it's not the time to "point fingers" as he was visiting the aftermath of the "Camp Fire." Zinke lamented the destruction Wednesday and said there were many factors in wildfires, including rising temperatures.
"There's a lot of reasons for a fire," he said. "Now is really not the time to point fingers."
Zinke was visiting the town of Paradise with Gov. Jerry Brown days after President Trump blamed "poor" forest management for the fire. Brown said climate change was the greater source of the problem.
Brown said he spoke with Mr. Trump on Wednesday and that the president has pledged "the full resources of the federal government." Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Brock Long called the blaze "one of the worst disasters that I've seen in my career."
Long said people affected by the fire can start requesting federal assistance.
Looting suspects arrested in Northern California
Authorities said six people have been arrested on suspicion of looting homes evacuated when the "Camp Fire" swept through a Northern California town and several surrounding communities. The Butte County Sheriff's Office said deputies on Monday found two men hiding inside a home in the town of Paradise with a .45 caliber handgun and drugs.
Deputies also found an ATV, an AR-15 rifle and tools the men were suspected of stealing. The sheriff's office said deputies arrested two other men Tuesday with a laptop computer that didn't belong to them.
A few hours later Tuesday, two more people were arrested after they were spotted in a motorhome reported stolen in the neighboring town of Magalia.
Remains found inside burnt home
Human remains were found inside a burnt residence in Southern California, authorities said Wednesday. The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said in a statement that homicide detectives were investigating whether the death was related to the wildfires.
The remains were found west of Los Angeles in Agoura Hills. Two deaths have already been linked to the "Woolsey Fire" that has devastated the area.
Utility's shares plummet as liability concerns rise
PG&E's stock lost more than 20 percent of its value Wednesday after the utility said it does not have nearly enough insurance coverage if it is found liable for the "Camp Fire." San Francisco-based Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. told Wall Street regulators that if its equipment were found to have caused the fire that has ravaged the town of Paradise, it "could be subject to significant liability in excess of insurance coverage."
That would deal a major blow to the utilities' finances and operations, it said. It noted that investigators have not yet determined the cause of the blaze.
PG&E's stock fell $7.13 to close Wednesday at $25.69, a level it hasn't seen since 2003. It has lost 47 percent of its value since the fire broke out last week.
The company said it has wildfire liability insurance coverage of about $1.4 billion for the year that ends July 31, 2019. An analyst with Citi Investment Research estimates damages from the fire could exceed $15 billion but noted that the state of California "will likely step in to protect the utility and its customers."
Trump calls wildfires "a very tough situation"
President Trump called the wildfires "devastating" and "the likes of which we've never seen before" at the White House on Tuesday. "We mourn the lives of those lost, and we pray for the victims, and there are more victims than anybody would ever even think possible," Mr. Trump said during a ceremony marking Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights.
On Saturday, the president blamed the fires on "poor" forest management in the state, saying on Twitter that there was "no reason for these massive, deadly and costly forest fires in California except that forest management is so poor." The causes for the state's biggest fires were under investigation.
Mr. Trump had threatened to withhold federal aid, but he approved an emergency disaster declaration Monday making federal resources available to affected communities. On Tuesday, the president thanked firefighters, first responders and officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for responding to the fires, which he described as "a very tough situation."
Liam Hemsworth posts picture of destroyed house
Actor Liam Hemsworth posted a picture of the remnants of his Malibu house on Twitter on Tuesday. Scorched stones spelling the word "love" are surrounded by what was left after the "Woolsey Fire" hit the "Hunger Games" star's home.
"It's been a heartbreaking few days," Hemsworth said. "This is what's left of my house. Love."
On Sunday, Miley Cyrus, who is reportedly Hemsworth's fiancee, said that she also lost her home, ET reports. Hemsworth said in another tweet Tuesday that he spent Monday in Malibu.
"It was amazing to see the community pulling together to help each other out in any way they can," Hemsworth said. "Malibu is a strong community and this event is only going to make it stronger."
No elevated radiation levels near ex-nuclear test site
California regulators said initial testing has found no elevated levels of radiation or hazardous compounds after the "Woolsey Fire" burned near a former nuclear test site in hills to the northwest of Los Angeles. The state Department of Toxic Substance Control said its staff went to the site known as the Santa Susana Field Laboratory on Saturday and found that facilities that previously handled radioactive and hazardous materials were not affected by the fire.
The organization Physicians for Social Responsibility said in statement Monday that it was likely that smoke and ash from the fire spread radiological and chemical contamination that was in soil and vegetation. But the state agency said its measurements on the site and in the surrounding community found no radiation levels above background levels and no elevated levels of hazardous compounds other than those normally present after a wildfire.
The site was used for decades for testing rocket engines and nuclear energy research. One of its nuclear reactors had a partial meltdown in 1959.
Battles over decontamination efforts have gone on for years, with neighbors blaming illnesses on the site.
Crews trying to keep "Camp Fire" away from town
The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said Tuesday that firefighters held containment lines to slow the "Camp Fire" from advancing toward Oroville, a town of 19,000 people. Officials said more than 5,000 firefighters were battling the blaze that leveled the town of Paradise.
Milder winds of up to 25 mph were expected in the area Tuesday. But Jonathan Pangburn, a fire behavior specialist at Cal Fire, said there's plenty of bone-dry vegetation ready to burn "really fast and hot."
Threat from "Woolsey Fire" far from over
In Southern California, firefighters said the threat from the "Woolsey Fire" was far from over, CBS News correspondent Jamie Yuccas reports. Gusty Santa Ana winds continued to cause flare-ups overnight Monday, forcing firefighters to move from spot fire to spot fire.
Some 200,000 people remain under mandatory evacuation orders. Dry vegetation, low humidity and mountainous geography make it hard for crews to get the upper hand.
Cal Fire Battalion Chief Lucas Spelman told Yuccas that the cause of the fire has yet to be determined. "Sometimes it takes weeks and even months to actually put all that together," he said.