Among those force to flee the Woolsey Fire, which had charred some 35,000 acres (14,164 hectares) as of Friday afternoon, were celebrities, including Lady Gaga and Kim Kardashian, who said on Twitter flames had damaged the home she shares in nearby Calabasas with Kanye West.
People reported much of the community of 30,000 people has gone up in flames, including homes, supermarkets, businesses, restaurants, schools and a retirement centre. The Los Angeles County Fire Department tweeted, "imminent threat!", as the fire raged through the Santa Monica Mountains toward the ocean. The area burned is more than 2.3 times the size of San Francisco (47 square miles).
Known as the Camp Fire, the blaze is burning in Butte County, in central California north of the state capital Sacramento.
A trio of rapidly expanding wildfires are burning in California, marking the latest in a string of harrowing climate-related disasters in America.
At the hospital in Paradise, more than 60 patients were evacuated to other facilities.
Northern California officials say investigators found five people dead in vehicles that were torched by the flames of a ferocious wildfire.
The flames descended on Paradise so quickly that many people were forced to abandon their cars and run for their lives down the sole road through the mountain town.
They lived in an RV park in the California foothill town and were unlikely equipped to evacuate.
Firefighter Adrien Mahnke pauses while battling the Camp Fire as it tears through Paradise, Calif., on November 8, 2018.
"Due to the burn injuries, identification could not be immediately made", the office said in a statement released Friday.
Sonoma Valley firefighters inspect burned out cars to make sure they are clear of human remains following a fire through a neighborhood, Friday, Nov. 9, 2018, in Paradise, California.
Kelly Lee called shelters looking for her husband's 93-year-old grandmother, Dorothy Herrera, who was last heard from Thursday morning.
Three fires across northern and southern California have scorched thousands of acres fanned by strong Santa Ana winds.
'We're getting them on other vehicles with room. I've linked to both of them and provided descriptions below.
California Governor-elect Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency to provide assistance to the fire-hit areas.
The 101 freeway is closed as the both the Hill and Woolsey fires have jumped the freeway near Camarillo as well as in Agoura Hills near Malibu. "Just landed back home and had one hour to pack up and evacuate our home". He said he thought he could save her house, but they would only watch helplessly as their home burned.
Large animals can be evacuated to the Zuma Beach parking lot in Malibu (30050 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, CA 90265), and Hansen Dam Equestrian Center (11127 Orcas Ave., Lake View Terrace CA 91342).