Spreading like wildfires in California

Fires+spread+throughout+California.+
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Spreading like wildfires in California

Fires spread throughout California.

Fires spread throughout California.

Photo courtesy of Peter Buschmann, United States Forest Service, USDA. Some additional editing by W.carter. [Public domain]

Fires spread throughout California.

Photo courtesy of Peter Buschmann, United States Forest Service, USDA. Some additional editing by W.carter. [Public domain]

Photo courtesy of Peter Buschmann, United States Forest Service, USDA. Some additional editing by W.carter. [Public domain]

Fires spread throughout California.

In 2017-2018, California (CA) broke records for the largest and most destructive fires in the state’s history. 2019 has proved to be no different, as even today CA is still fighting deadly fires. At least eight fires are currently burning in California right now, leading many civilians to wonder how the fires have started and if they’ll ever truly burn out for good.
The Kincade Fire started in Sonoma County on October 23 and has burned nearly 80,000 acres, destroying nearly 174 homes. The fire has since burned out and evacuation orders were lifted, but many were left without homes.
Another fire called the Maria Fire started in Ventura Country, burning down almost 10,000 acres. The firemen were able to contain the fire as quickly as it started, although many fires are not as easy to contain.
Before wildfire season, state regulators approved safety and prevention programs submitted by California’s major investor-owned utilities. The three big power companies, Pacific Gas and Electric, Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas & Electric had intentional blackouts as part of their strategies to prevent wildfires caused by their equipment.
The strategy to decrease and prevent wildfires did little to help the surplus of wildfires in California this year. Not only are electrical companies partially responsible for these fires, but there are many other factors that contribute to the numerous California fires that have been igniting since 2017.
Global warming is one of the biggest causes of recent wildfires. The atmosphere is getting increasingly warm and raising the risk of storms, which causes the fires itself. If there is a dry thunderstorm, lightning will strike the dry grass and trees, making it easier to start a forest fire. Over the past 50 years, the average global temperature has increased at the fastest rate in recorded history.
Humans play a big role in the fires, as well, by not burning out their campfires, not fully putting out their cigarette butts, using equipment such as machinery, etc. But, fires started by humans are easier to contain than fires started by a lightning strike or any natural occurrence, which can take hours for firefighters to contain.
Mr. Botzer stated, “many of the fires are caused by human negligence, as humans we need to make sure we recognize that we start the fires.”
There are many tasks that humans can do to help prevent fires, such as simply being careful and aware, and complying with all fire restrictions. Although accidents happen, it’s best to make sure to never leave a fire unsupervised. If a fire does break out, be sure to inform the fire department immediately. Smokers should also be aware of their cigarettes and double check to make sure they’re burnt out all the way.
Mrs. Helmkamp said, “we can help prevent forest fires by being careful with campfires and doing controlled burns to get rid of the underbrush in the forest.”
Though the fires seem to be multiplying in California, other states should be cautious and worried as well. Fires are becoming more frequent and more difficult to put out, leaving concern as to whether the fires will spread past California and into other states. Because caution and awareness are the biggest factors to prevent environmental damage, humans can take action and stop future wildfires.