It will be months before authorities can identify the names and number of people killed in the devastating fires that have swept through California in the United States.

In some cases, all they have to work with is bone fragments and pieces of dental work and teeth, so it can be incredibly difficult to identify people who have perished in a fire of this magnitude.

The Camp Fire has scorched an area roughly the size of Chicago, burned down more than 13,000 homes and killed at least 83 people, with the number increasing daily.

Hundreds of people are unaccounted for.

At its height the blaze is reported to have burned through the equivalent of a football field every two seconds.

Nothing escaped the wrath of the wildfires including countless cars, many of them classics that have been lost forever.

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Chris Riley has been a journalist for almost 40 years. He has spent half of his career as a writer, editor and production editor in newspapers, the rest of the time driving and writing about cars both in print and online. His love affair with cars began as a teenager with the purchase of an old VW Beetle, followed by another Beetle and a string of other cars on which he has wasted too much time and money. A self-confessed geek, he’s not afraid to ask the hard questions - at the risk of sounding silly.