The state of California (USA) lived its second wave of fires of the summer this long weekend, in the middle of a heat wave in which temperatures much higher than usual have been registered and only a few weeks after the declaration of the first, mid-August
| 08/09/2020 | ionicons-v5-c11: 39 | AP |
Unlike the first wave, when the fires were concentrated in the north of the state, this time the worst part is taking the center and the south, with two large fires burning near Los Angeles and San Diego, and a third declared in the Sierra Nevada.
This third, the one in the mountains, is the one that spread the fastest this Monday, burning two dozen houses in the small town of Big Creek and forcing the total evacuation of the population of Auberry, of 2,500 inhabitants.
In addition, the fire forced the evacuation by helicopter of more than 200 people who were in the popular camping area of Mammoth Pool on Sunday.
Since it started Friday, the Creek Fire – as it has been christened by the Department of Forestry and Protection against Fires of California (Cal Fire) – has already burned 32,000 hectares and the ten fire crews working on it have yet to make any progress on containment.
In parallel, another fire burns in San Bernardino County, near Los Angeles, which has destroyed 3,000 hectares and started on Saturday morning because of a « pyrotechnic device » used at a party, according to reports. firefighters, who have it contained in 7%.
The third major fire that started this weekend has also burned since Saturday in an area of vegetation east of San Diego, near the border with Mexico, and has already burned more than 4,000 hectares.
The flames are spreading very easily because of the dry ground – many parts of California They have hardly received rainwater for months – and the extreme temperatures that are being experienced by the heat wave, which in some cases is exceeding 40 degrees.
The intense heat has also prompted the state’s leading electric power provider, Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) to announce that it may have to resort to deliberate outages to prevent the system from overloading, and as a preventive measure against new potential fires.
This new wave of fires It is added to the one declared on the weekend of August 15 and 16, when an unusual electrical storm occurred in much of the state in California in which 10,800 lightning strikes fell, but hardly any rain, which together with a heat wave and the dryness of the land, caused thousands of fires to start.
Two of these fires, one east of San José and one in the Napa wine country, are the second and third largest in state history, and after fighting them for several weeks, firefighters now have them more than 90% contained .