LAKEPORT, Calif. – The largest forest fire ever recorded in California, only 11 days to blacken an area nearly the size of Los Angeles and it is just one of the many huge brands that this is the worst fire season in state history.
About 14,000 firefighters from as far away as Florida and even New Zealand to compete in order to brake 18 fires in the middle of a hot summer which has seen the wind whipped flames carving their way through the national forest of the country and of the rural areas, threaten urban areas, and burn areas.
“For whatever reason, fires are burning much more intense, much faster than before,” said Mark A. Hartwig, president of the California Fire Chiefs Association.
A number of the largest fire broke out just within the past few weeks the state has seen record-breaking temperatures and the historically worst months of wildfire season still to come.
In Northern California, the record-setting Mendocino Complex — twin fire is treated as a single fire gained ground Tuesday, but slowly, because the own smoke covered the area and reduced the temperature, according to the California Department of Forestry.
The flames, which had burned in 457 square miles (1,184 square miles), raged in often remote areas and no deaths or serious injuries reported, but 75 houses were destroyed.
The fire, which broke out July 27, in the first instance, quickly spread by what officials said was a perfect combination of weather, rugged topography, and abundant brush and wood turned to tinder by years of drought.
Resources were thin in the first place, because thousands of the firefighters were from a fire hundreds of miles to the north. That fire, which spread in the city of Redding, killed six people and destroyed more than 1,000 homes. The so-called Carr Fire was less than half included.
California is the see of earlier, longer and more devastating bushfire seasons because of drought, warmer weather attributed to climate change, and the construction of houses deeper in the forests.
The largest fire in the history of California, Mendocino Complex fire broke a record that just eight months ago. A blaze in Southern California in December killed two people, burned 440 square miles (1,140 square kilometers) and destroyed more than 1,000 buildings.
California’s fire fighting costs have more than tripled from $242 million in 2013 fiscal year to $773 million in the 2018 fiscal year that ended on 30 June, according to Cal Fire.
“We are in uncharted territory,” Gov. Jerry Brown warned last week. “Since civilization emerged 10,000 years ago, that we still have not had this kind of heat condition, and it will continue and get worse. That is the way it is.”
Associated Press writers Don Thompson in Sacramento, Calif., and Lorin Eleni Gill and Olga Rodriguez in San Francisco also contributed to this report.
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