More than 30 people have been killed and hundreds of others are missing as wildfires continue to blaze across California.
The Camp Fire in Northern California and the Woolsey Fire in Southern California are spreading absolute devastation and are causing thousands of people to evacuate their home.
During a press conference on Sunday afternoon, Governor Jerry Brown warned residents that this “is the new abnormal” and said the fires will likely worsen over the coming days.
He also said that more than 149,000 people have been forced to evacuate as a result of the fires.
“We have the best firefighters and first responders in the country working in some of the most difficult conditions imaginable. We’re putting everything we’ve got into the fight against these fires and this request ensures communities on the front lines get additional federal aid,” Governor Brown said in a statement via his office. “To those who have lost friends and family members, homes and businesses, know that the entire state is with you. As Californians, we are strong and resilient, and together we will recover.”
Wired has more on Brown’s claim the weather is working against civilians and fire-fighting forces:
The driving force has been extreme wind—gusts of up to 60 miles per hour, perhaps even 70 in the hills of Southern California—blowing through the state. Wind further desiccates already dry vegetation and pushes the fires along with incredible speed … The fire-fanning winds originate in the jet stream, a band of strong winds in the upper reaches of the atmosphere. The jet stream strengthens at this time of year, amplifying its natural meandering nature and creating troughs that move south through California, which you can see in the tweet below. That’s why all these fires popped up on either end of the state nearly simultaneously: They share a common origin in the jet stream.
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As ABC News reports, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Chief Scott Jalbert said the fires were among the worst the state has ever witnessed, adding that the fires have taken a tremendous personal cost to residents of the state.
“This week, California has experienced the most destructive fires we have seen in its history. There are 196,000 acres burned, thousands of homes and dozens of lives lost,” Jalbert said.
ABC News confirmed the comments and noted the complete devastation caused by the Camp Fire:
The largest and deadliest of the infernos is the Camp Fire, which as of Sunday had burned 109,000 acres, leveled 6,435 homes and another 260 commercial structures in Northern California’s Butte County, according to officials. There were at least 228 people unaccounted for as of early Monday.
At least 29 civilians have been killed in the Camp Fire, which ignited on Thursday and quickly swept through communities in the Sierra foothills, nearly wiping out the bucolic town of Paradise. At least five firefighters have been injured battling the blaze.
The Camp Fire is 25 percent contained, per the report.
The Woolsey Fire is less contained at only 15 percent.
Here’s more on the southern fire:
Meanwhile, the Woolsey Fire in Southern California was only 15 percent contained Sunday after blackening 85,500 acres across Los Angeles and Ventura counties and destroying 177 structures, Cal Fire said.
Another fire burning in the area, the Hill Fire, was 70 percent contained Sunday after it consumed 4,531 acres in Ventura County near Thousand Oaks, where a gunman killed 12 people Wednesday night at a country bar before taking his own life.
For people not directly being affected by the fires, the complete devastation caused by them can be difficult to comprehend. Take a look, via the Daily Wire: