(CNN)A wildfire is hopscotching across a northern California county at a rate of roughly 80 football fields per minute, forcing evacuations, injuring residents and firefighters, and sending families racing from their homes.
A state of emergency has been declared for Butte County due to the effects of the Camp Fire, which began around 6:30 a.m. Thursday and quickly spread, said the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, known as Cal Fire. By 2:00 p.m. local time, it had grown to 18,000 acres, according to Cal Fire.
Fueled by winds, the wildfire jumped ridges from Pulga to Concow and down into Paradise, a town of 26,000 people about 85 miles north of Sacramento. Residents awoke to the stench of smoke and the morning horizon drenched in an ashen-orange that was difficult to see or drive through, hindering evacuations.