Wildfires have burned in areas across California. According to the CAL FIRE website, the Ponderosa Fire in Butte County California has burned 4,016 acres with 32 homes and 22 outbuildings destroyed. This fire is 72% contained at the moment and had 113 engines and 1,551 personnel respond. This fire has been allegedly started by a 29-year-old Oroville resident who recklessly started a campfire. According to news reports, high winds and hot temperatures have made firefighting efforts difficult. Having visited the community affected by the fire, my heart was sick when I saw a picture of a home fully engulfed in fire in Butte County, California.
In Southern California, a wildfire has been raging in Los Angeles County, the La Tuna Fire according to a news report burnt 7,000 acres. This governor of the state of California has declared a state of emergency. Eight people were injured in the fire including four firefighters. A total of 206 engines, 4 dozers, 5 water tenders, 9 helicopters and a total of 1,061 firefighters have responded according to the last update on the LA Fire Department twitter page of September 4. In a number of acres burnt, since the 1961 Bellaire Fire, this is the largest fire that has burnt in Los Angeles history. High temperatures which caused the vegetation to dry out contributed to the intensity of this fire. Usually “fire season” in Southern California occurs in October and November with the hot dry Santa Anna winds. This could be an indication of a long fire season.
Wildfires are burning throughout California. According to a CAL Fire website some other wildfires currently burning in California include the Caldwell Fire 878 acres Kern County, Helena Fire 10,930 acres Trinity County, Salmon-August Complex 51,008 acres Siskiyou County, Pier Fire 17,980 acres Tulare County and the Palmer Fire 3,874 acres in Riverside California.
Wildfires are one natural event that residents can do a lot to prepare for. Preparing in advance of a wildfire can significantly reduce your risk of loss. NFPA’s Firewise website offers free tips and resources to help you get started today.