One of the California wildfires grew so fast it burned the equivalent of a football field every second

(CNN)The three main wildfires raging in California have expanded rapidly, devouring virtually everything in their paths. One fire burned an area equivalent to the size of a football field every second during a period Thursday into Friday. Intense winds and low humidity are feeding the flames. So is very dry vegetation, as much of California has seen gotten than 5% of its normal rainfall over the last month. Here are some other startling facts about the fires:   CAMP FIRE The Camp Fire, which is burning in Butte County in Northern California, had grew by Friday to 70,000 acres. It had charred 20,000 acres Thursday in less than 14 hours. It grew by 5,000 acres Thursday in just three hours, according to Cal Fire, meaning it expanded by an average of more than one football field every 3 seconds during that period. The Camp Fire's most significant growth [...]

2018-11-09T14:29:02+00:00November 9th, 2018|0 Comments

California wildfires now larger than New York City and Boston combined

(CNN)One week after the Thomas Fire exploded from a brush fire to a raging inferno, hundreds of firefighters are still struggling to contain it. The blaze is larger than all of New York City and was only 15% contained as of Monday morning, according to the fire protection agency CAL FIRE.   At more than 230,000 acres in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, the Thomas Fire is now the fifth largest wildfire in modern California history. But it's only one of six major wildfires torching the state.   As the flames move on to new neighborhoods, some evacuated residents have returned to find no home standing.   David Karian used a hand rake to sift through the charred rubble of his elderly parents' home in Ventura.   "There's not much, but if there's a few things that will help them have some connection to the past, [...]

2018-11-04T10:13:51+00:00December 11th, 2017|0 Comments

First fire-related death confirmed in Southern California

(CNN)A woman whose body was found at a crash site along an evacuation route in Southern California became the first confirmed fire-related casualty in a series of raging wildfires that could gain strength this weekend. Gov. Jerry Brown on Saturday was due to visit Ventura County, home to the largest of the six wildfires, the Thomas Fire. He'll survey damage, meet with affected residents, consult with government officials and emergency responders, and brief reporters, his office said. His visit comes as strong Santa Ana winds this weekend could fuel the flames, the National Weather Service said. Wind gusts in the region will be 35 to 55 mph through Sunday, CNN meteorologist Rachel Aissen said. The forecast could challenge firefighters, who by Friday had made progress against the Thomas Fire, officials said. "With this break in the weather, we've made good progress, but that progress is [...]

2018-11-04T10:13:52+00:00December 9th, 2017|0 Comments

Helena fire containment up

Firefighters continue to work on containing the damaging Helena fire, with the focus on protecting residences in the Canyon Creek Road area and completing handlines. As of Tuesday, the human-caused Helena fire that burned 72 homes in Junction City had reached 18,392 acres. The lightning-caused Fork fire in the Trinity Alps Wilderness, which is expected to merge with the Helena fire, had reached 3,519 acres. The two fires are being managed by the same team and together encompass 21,911 acres. Containment on the fires was at 58 percent. “We’ve gained a lot of ground,” said Olivia Rahman, information officer for the Helena-Fork fire. “We’ve secured a lot of the edge of the fire.” Firefighters have been patrolling around residences on Canyon Creek Road looking for signs of remaining heat close to containment lines. They also are working to complete remaining handlines east into Connor Creek [...]

2018-11-04T10:14:01+00:00September 16th, 2017|0 Comments

Nearly 2 million acres of land are burning across the US in one of the worst fire seasons we’ve ever seen

It's been a year of extreme weather. Hurricanes have devastated Texas and the Caribbean, and monsoon floods have displaced millions and killed more than 1,000 people in South Asia. Meanwhile, one of the worst US wildfire seasons in years has ignited blazes across the west. Almost 2 million acres of land — an area nearly the size of Rhode Island and Delaware combined — are currently aflame, according to the September 14 daily report by the National Interagency Fire Center. There are more than 100 active wildfires and at least 41 uncontained large blazes, battled by more than 25,000 responders, the National Guard, and half a battalion of active-duty soldiers. Eagle Creek wildfire burns as golfers play at the Beacon Rock Golf Course in North Bonneville, Washington.REUTERS/Kristi McCluer TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY "This one in particular has been a longer season. It really hasn't stopped since the fall of 2016," Chris Wilcox of the National [...]

2018-11-04T10:14:01+00:00September 14th, 2017|0 Comments

Wildfires ravaging the Western U.S. as smoke sprawls across the nation

Countless numbers of out of control wildfires are creating apocalypse-like conditions in numerous Western states, blotting out the noonday sun behind thick blankets of smoke and depositing ash like freshly fallen snow. So much smoke has been generated that images from space showed it spreading over large parts of the Lower 48. One of the hardest-hit states, Montana, has had almost 1 million acres burned since the beginning of summer. Officials there have said this is one of the top five worst fire seasons in state history. The largest fire in Montana is the Rice Ridge fire, which as of Tuesday had burned 108,126 acres and was only 2 percent contained. In Seeley Lake, the massive blaze has burned numerous homes and buildings and has turned the vibrant vacation spot into a virtual ghost town. The smoke has been so thick at times that you could barely see across the street, according [...]

2018-11-04T10:14:07+00:00September 6th, 2017|0 Comments

Largest wildfire in Los Angeles history forces hundreds to evacuate

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A wildfire on the northern edge of Los Angeles rapidly grew on Saturday into what the mayor called the largest blaze in the city’s history, prompting the evacuation of hundreds of people and the closure of a major highway. The 5,000-acre (2,023-hectare) La Tuna Fire, named after the canyon area where it erupted on Friday, has led authorities to evacuate more than 700 homes in a north Los Angeles neighborhood and in nearby Burbank and Glendale, officials said. Authorities warned of erratic winds that could force them to widen the evacuation zone, after the fire destroyed one house in Los Angeles on Saturday. “Other than that, no loss of any property,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said at a news conference. “That is a pretty amazing thing.” The fire was only 10 percent contained with more than 500 firefighters battling it. [...]

2018-11-04T10:14:07+00:00September 2nd, 2017|0 Comments

19 wildfires burn in California

A wildfire that started on Sunday quickly burned through 650 acres and is threatening 200 structures in central California. A separate fire in that region burned through 9 square miles and forced officials to order evacuations in three towns. (Sept. 4) AP Firefighters in California were battling 19 large wildfires statewide, officials said Sunday, including a brush fire that was being called the largest ever in Los Angeles. In all, more than more than 12,000 pairs of boots were on the ground battling the fires, and temperatures on Sunday were up to 20 degrees hotter than usual. California Gov. Jerry Brown on Friday issued an emergency proclamation for Butte County, north of Sacramento, in the wake of the Ponderosa fire, which began on Aug. 29. The fire, which is dwarfed by several larger blazes elsewhere in the state, has burned about 4,000 acres so far. It has [...]

2018-11-04T10:14:08+00:00August 4th, 2017|0 Comments