According to fire.ca.gov, there have been 8,486 fires during 2020 so far. This fall in particular there was an outburst of fires across the west coast primarily in California. According to USA Today, ten states have sent forces or equipment to help fight the wildfires across California. National Post news reported there have been 10,488 structures damaged or destroyed and at least 31 fatalities as of Oct. 26. The 4.1 million acres burned in 2020 are the most in a single year since CalFire began keeping records, and more than the last three years combined. According to the Los Angeles Times, the most recent fire, the Bruder fire, started on October 15 and is 92% contained. The largest fire is the August Complex fire that started on August 16. It is 80% contained and has already burned 1,032,209 acres. The August Complex fire is the largest wildfire in California history and is thought to have been sparked by lightning strikes forming multiple smaller fires that eventually combined. Not only did the largest wildfire in California history start during 2020, but the top third through sixth fires started in 2020 as well. The second-largest wildfire is from 2018, however, some of the fires from 2020 are still burning and increasing their acreage. One of the more well-known fires this year is the El Dorado fire started by a gender reveal party. The El Dorado fire has been burning for over forty days after starting in September and burning over 22,000 acres.
On Nov. 3, CalFire reported, “This morning nearly 4,100 firefighters continue to battle 22 wildfires in California. Yesterday, firefighters responded to 23 new wildfires and quickly contained them. As favorable weather continues, firefighters are strongly working to increase containment lines. Continued quiet, dry, and mild conditions continue through much of the week. Locally elevated fire weather conditions continue across the southern California mountains through midweek, where local wind gusts to 30 mph and very dry conditions are expected. Areas of coastal fog tonight into Wednesday morning. Significant change in the weather pattern expected Friday and into the weekend. Much cooler temperatures expected statewide by the weekend. Fire weather conditions may become elevated for parts of the state during the windiest conditions on Friday. The forecast for November predicts warmer and drier than average weather across much of California. Many areas in Northern California, as well as the Southern Coast and Los Angeles Basin, will remain at an above normal potential for significant fire. Despite cooler temperatures, fire danger remains elevated due to lack of rainfall and warmer than normal temperatures.”
As the year continues we send thoughts and prayers to the thousands of firefighters risking their lives to save our own. We also are praying for all who have lost their houses, businesses, or family members to these fires. Please be aware of ways fires can be prevented and stay safe.