10 dead as major wildfires ignite across northern California

More than a dozen wildfires ignited and speeded on powerful winds through California wine country overnight, killing at least 10 people, destroying hundreds of homes and other structures, forcing thousands of people to flee and leaving tens of thousands of others without power, state officials said Monday.

Gov. Jerry Brown declared an emergency in eight counties, including Napa and Sonoma in the heart of wine country, as at least 15 new fires burned across the northern half of the state. The Federal Emergency Management Agency immediately agreed to the state's request for federal funds to help fight many of the fires, the Department of Homeland Security said.

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Devastating wildfires ravage California's wine country
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Devastating wildfires ravage California's wine country
SANTA ROSA, CA - OCTOBER 09: Burned lawn chairs sit next to the swimming pool at the Journey's End Mobile Home Park on October 9, 2017 in Santa Rosa, California. Ten people have died in wildfires that have burned tens of thousands of acres and destroyed over 1,500 homes and businesses in several Northen California counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: Fire consumes a barn as an out of control wildfire moves through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
YOUNTVILLE, CA - OCTOBER 09: A Los Angeles County firefighter monitors approching flames near a building as an out of control wildfire moves through the area on October 9, 2017 in Yountville, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
NAPA, CA - OCTOBER 09: Burned out wine bottles sit on a rack at the fire damaged Signarello Estate winery after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Napa, California. Tens of thousands of acres and hundreds of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
SONOMA, CA - OCTOBER 09: A burned out home sits next a vineyard after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Sonoma, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
NAPA, CA - OCTOBER 09: The remains of the fire daaged Signarello Estate winery after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Napa, California. Ten people have died in wildfires that have burned tens of thousands of acres and destroyed over 1,500 homes and businesses in several Northen California counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: A resident rushes to save his home as an out of control wildfire moves through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: A resident rushes to save his home as an out of control wildfire moves through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
A burned home smolders in Glen Ellen, California on October 9, 2017. Multiple wind-driven fires continue to ravage the area burning structures and causing widespread evacuations. / AFP PHOTO / JOSH EDELSON (Photo credit should read JOSH EDELSON/AFP/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: The remains of fire damaged homes after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: Fire consumes a barn as an out of control wildfire moves through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: Fire consumes a home as an out of control wildfire moves through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: The remains of fire damaged homes after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: A resident rushes to save his home as an out of control wildfire moves through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: Cows stand on a patch of unburned grass after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: Burned cars sit idle after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: Fire consumes a home as an out of control wildfire move through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: Fire consumes a home as an out of control wildfire move through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: The remains of fire damaged homes after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: Flames consume a home as an out of control wildfire move through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: Flames consume a home as an out of control wildfire move through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: Fire consumes a home as an out of control wildfire move through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: The remains of fire damaged homes after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
An aerial photo of the devastation left behind from the North Bay wildfires north of San Francisco, California, October 9, 2017. California Highway Patrol/Golden Gate Division/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY
An aerial photo of the devastation left behind from the North Bay wildfires north of San Francisco, California, October 9, 2017. California Highway Patrol/Golden Gate Division/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY
A burned home smolders in Glen Ellen, California on October 9, 2017. Multiple wind-driven fires continue to ravage the area burning structures and causing widespread evacuations. / AFP PHOTO / JOSH EDELSON (Photo credit should read JOSH EDELSON/AFP/Getty Images)
A garage door is left standing in front of a smoldering home in Glen Ellen, California on October 9, 2017. Multiple wind-driven fires continue to ravage the area burning structures and causing widespread evacuations. / AFP PHOTO / JOSH EDELSON (Photo credit should read JOSH EDELSON/AFP/Getty Images)
A gas line spews flames at a burned out property in Glen Ellen, California on October 9, 2017. Multiple wind-driven fires continue to ravage the area burning structures and causing widespread evacuations. / AFP PHOTO / JOSH EDELSON (Photo credit should read JOSH EDELSON/AFP/Getty Images)
YOUNTVILLE, CA - OCTOBER 09: A Napa Valley public worker sprays water on a building as an out of control wildfire moves through the area on October 9, 2017 in Yountville, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
YOUNTVILLE, CA - OCTOBER 09: A Los Angeles County firefighter monitors approching flames near a building as an out of control wildfire moves through the area on October 9, 2017 in Yountville, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
NAPA, CA - OCTOBER 09: Fire burns a trailer and parking structure as an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Napa, California. Tens of thousands of acres and hundreds of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
NAPA, CA - OCTOBER 09: The remains of the fire damaged Signarello Estate winery after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Napa, California. Tens of thousands of acres and hundreds of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
NAPA, CA - OCTOBER 09: The remains of the fire damaged Signarello Estate winery after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Napa, California. Tens of thousands of acres and hundreds of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
NAPA, CA - OCTOBER 09: The remains of the fire damaged Signarello Estate winery after an out of control wildfire moved through the area on October 9, 2017 in Napa, California. Tens of thousands of acres and hundreds of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
CALIFORNIA, USA - OCTOBER 10: A view of a warning banner in San Francisco as a wildfire from the Santa Rosa and Napa Valley moves through the area in California, United States on October 10, 2017. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
CALIFORNIA, USA - OCTOBER 10: Smoke rises as a wildfire from the Santa Rosa and Napa Valley moves through the area in California, United States on October 10, 2017. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
CALIFORNIA, USA - OCTOBER 10: A view of a San Francisco gulf as smoke covers the sun as a wildfire from the Santa Rosa and Napa Valley moves through the area in California, United States on October 10, 2017. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
CALIFORNIA, USA - OCTOBER 10: A view of a San Francisco gulf as smoke covers the sun as a wildfire from the Santa Rosa and Napa Valley moves through the area in California, United States on October 10, 2017. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
SANTA ROSA, CA - OCTOBER 09: Burned out cars sit next to a building on fire in a fire ravaged neighborhood on October 9, 2017 in Santa Rosa, California. Ten people have died in wildfires that have burned tens of thousands of acres and destroyed over 1,500 homes and businesses in several Northen California counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
CALIFORNIA, USA - OCTOBER 10: A view of a San Francisco gulf as smoke covers the sun as a wildfire from the Santa Rosa and Napa Valley moves through the area in California, United States on October 10, 2017. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
SANTA ROSA, CA - OCTOBER 09: A resident goes through personal belongings in a parking lot next to a fire damaged Arby's restaurant on October 9, 2017 in Santa Rosa, California. Ten people have died in wildfires that have burned tens of thousands of acres and destroyed over 1,500 homes and businesses in several Northen California counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
SANTA ROSA, CA - OCTOBER 09: Flames consume a section of the Hilton Sonoma Wine Country on October 9, 2017 in Santa Rosa, California. Ten people have died in wildfires that have burned tens of thousands of acres and destroyed over 1,500 homes and businesses in several Northen California counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
SANTA ROSA, CA - OCTOBER 09: Burned out cars sit next to a building on fire in a fire ravaged neighborhood on October 9, 2017 in Santa Rosa, California. Ten people have died in wildfires that have burned tens of thousands of acres and destroyed over 1,500 homes and businesses in several Northen California counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
SANTA ROSA, CA - OCTOBER 09: Smoke continues to rise from the Hilton Sonoma Wine Country on October 9, 2017 in Santa Rosa, California. Ten people have died in wildfires that have burned tens of thousands of acres and destroyed over 1,500 homes and businesses in several Northen California counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
SONOMA, CA - OCTOBER 09: An out of control wildfire approaches Gundlach Bundschu winery on October 9, 2017 in Sonoma, California. Ten people have died in wildfires that have burned tens of thousands of acres and destroyed over 1,500 homes and businesses in several Northen California counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
An aerial shows damage caused by wildfires in Santa Rosa, California, U.S October 11, 2017. Picture taken October 11, 2017. REUTERS/DroneBase TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
An American flag hangs from a tree in a neighborhood destroyed by wildfire in Santa Rosa, California, U.S., October 12, 2017. REUTERS/Jim Urquhart TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Area residents walk through a neighborhood destroyed by wildfire in Santa Rosa, California, U.S., October 12, 2017. REUTERS/Jim Urquhart TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Wine stains are seen on a fermentation tank at Paradise Ridge Winery after being destroyed by the Tubbs Fire in Santa Rosa, California, U.S., October 12, 2017. REUTERS/Stephen Lam TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) trucks are seen parked on a road between homes destroyed by the Tubbs Fire in Santa Rosa, California, U.S., October 11, 2017. Picture taken October 11, 2017. REUTERS/Stephen Lam TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
A wildfire is shown from the air near Atlas Road during an operation to rescue people trapped by wildfire in Napa, California, U.S., October 9, 2017. Photo taken October 9, 2017. Courtesy California Highway Patrol/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
A burnt tree stands amidst the destroyed Journey's End Mobile Home Park during the Tubbs Fire in Santa Rosa, California, U.S., October 9, 2017. REUTERS/Stephen Lam TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Smoke and flame rise from the Hilton Sonoma Wine Country during the Tubbs Fire in Santa Rosa, California, U.S., October 9, 2017. REUTERS/Stephen Lam TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
An aerial view of properties destroyed by the Tubbs Fire is seen in Santa Rosa, California, U.S., October 11, 2017. REUTERS/Stephen Lam TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
NAPA, CA -OCTOBER 12: Flowers mark the spot where his father died as Mike Rippey walks through the ruins of the house of 100-year-old Charles and 98-year-old Sara Rippey, who were killed in the Atlas Fire just after it began, on October 12, 2017 near Napa, California. Thousands homes have burned and two dozen people have been confirmed dead so far as numerous wildfires continue to spread in eight Northern California counties. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SANTA ROSA, CA - OCTOBER 11: An aerial view of homes that were destroyed by the Tubbs Fire on October 11, 2017 in Santa Rosa, California. Twenty one people have died in wildfires that have burned tens of thousands of acres and destroyed over 3,000 homes and businesses in several Northen California counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
SANTA ROSA, CA -OCTOBER 10: A toy car is left scorched in a neighborhood destroyed by fire near Cardinal Newman High School on October 10, 2017 in Santa Rosa, California. In one of the worst wildfires in state history, at least 1,500 homes have burned and 11 people have died as more than 14 wildfires continue to spread in eight Northern California counties. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
GLEN ELLEN, CA - OCTOBER 09: A resident rushes to save his home as an out of control wildfire moves through the area on October 9, 2017 in Glen Ellen, California. Tens of thousands of acres and dozens of homes and businesses have burned in widespread wildfires that are burning in Napa and Sonoma counties. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Homeowner Phil Rush looks at the remains of his home destroyed by wildfire in Santa Rosa, California, on October 11, 2017. Rush said he and his wife and dog escaped with only their medication, a bag of dog food when flames overtook their entire neighborhood on October 9. The toll from Northern California's ranging wildfires continued to grow as officials said the fires destroyed up to 2,000 structures and killed at least 17 people. / AFP PHOTO / Robyn Beck (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
NAPA, CA -OCTOBER 11: The body of a cow that died in the Atlas Fire is seen in Soda Canyon on October 11, 2017 near Napa, California. In one of the worst wildfires in state history, more than 2,000 homes have burned and at least 21 people have been killed as more than 14 wildfires continue to spread with little containment in eight Northern California counties. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
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The Sonoma County Sheriff's Office confirmed late Monday afternoon that seven people had been killed in fire-related incidents. The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection confirmed that two people had been killed in Napa County and that one had been killed in Mendocino County.

Mark Ghilarducci, director of the state Office of Emergency Services, said at a news conference Monday afternoon that other deaths were likely across the region — because the fires were moving so rapidly, authorities were "still trying to get our hands around" the full extent of the damage and casualties, he said.

And Cal Fire Director Ken Pimlott said that many other people had been injured and that an undetermined number of others was missing.

Pacific Gas & Electric said more than 102,000 customers were without power early Monday afternoon, most of them in Napa and Sonoma counties. The California Highway Patrol said it had rescued 44 people by helicopter.

All of the new fires started after 10 p.m. PT (7 p.m. ET) on Sunday, Pimlott said, bringing the total spread of more than 25 fires across the northern half of California to about 73,000 acres at what he called the worst possible time.

Californians are pushing their way through a phenomenon called the Santa Ana winds — powerful systems that start inland and almost always blast a hair dryer of hot, extremely dry air across northern California and the southern California coast.

The hot, dry blasts are sometimes called los diablos, or "the devil winds," and they often create critical fire conditions.

"Every spark is going to ignite a fire," said Pimlott, who said that the rash of blazes "all started about 10 o'clock last night" and that "we're continuing to get new starts."

"Imagine a wind-whipped fire burning at explosive rates," he said. "The planets literally aligned to have this explosive state."

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