Thursday, 18 October, 2018

Northern California blazes now largest in state history

A firefighting helicopter drops water onto a hot spot at the River Fire near Lakeport California North California wildfires expand to more than two-thirds the size of LA
Glenn Montgomery | 07 August, 2018, 11:38

The Mendocino Complex fire, which comprises the Ranch Fire and River Fire, is the largest blaze Californian firefighters are now tackling.

"The soldiers will be outfitted with wildland fire Personal Protective Equipment and all of the gear they will need to serve as wildland firefighters", U.S. Northern Command said in a statement.

Officials from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CalFire) and the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, Idaho, stressed that wild-land blazes are battled primarily by crews hacking away at dry brush with hand tools and bulldozers, not with water. "That's one of those records you don't want to see".

California fire officials said Monday that the two fires about 100 miles north of San Francisco were 30 percent contained and have scorched 428 square miles.

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for evidence to support Trump's tweet.

A day later he posted another tweet about water being "diverted", and he said Gov.

"California wildfires are being magnified & made so much worse by the bad environmental laws which aren't allowing massive amounts of readily available water to be properly utilized", Trump said.

Firefighters stand watch on a roof as a wildfire sweeps through the area near Lakeport, Calif., Thursday, August 2, 2018.

"Can be used for fires, farming and everything else", the president said. "The current weather is causing more severe and destructive fires". "We had some very erratic fire conditions and it actually crossed the dozer lines and made a hard push, (but) we were able to stop it at Bear Creek Road" and create solid dozer lines on the east section of the fire.

Elsewhere across the state, firefighters are working to put out more than a dozen other fires that have killed several people, ravaged thousands of acres, and sparked air quality alerts.

For one thing, the wildfires are in the hills, far from the Pacific Ocean and from the man-made storage and distribution system that carries water from California's wetter north to the drier, more populated south.

The US president has criticised Governor Jerry Brown and California's environmental laws on social media in recent days.

Ayeta died when his vehicle crashed as he worked with crews in risky terrain in Shasta County. ZACA FIRE (Santa Barbara County), July 2007 Acres burned: Structures destroyed: Deaths: 7.

Overall, experts say Trump's Twitter remarks ignore two of the biggest factors in the wildfires: Climate change, which is likely exacerbating the droughts that lead to fires, and increased development near forests that makes the fires more risky to life and property. Here are the 10 largest fires in California history. These backfires give off large plumes of smoke, and their flames have been visible from Ukiah, but it should be remembered that they are a firefighting measure, and though they may appear threatening from the Ukiah Valley, they instead represent progress in containing the fire, and ensuring that it does not actually threaten the valley.

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