Fiery Déjà vu

California wildfires continue to rage this season

This kind of déjà vu is the worst to experience when put in writing. Imagine multiplying that by a thousand, with the utmost severity, for those who are living it. If you’re feeling redundancy from reading about California wildfires—it isn’t a mistake—they’re just happening all the time. Especially during the summer season, when these fires are the most common.

A wildfire in a rural northern region of California has tripled in size overnight and more evacuations have been ordered. The fire in Shasta County was estimated at more than 31 square miles (80 square kilometers) Thursday morning.

Videos of another wildfire near Yosemite National Park in central California can be seen below, from Tuesday:

Meanwhile, a separate fire in the southern part of the state has caused mass evacuations and mayhem. “Thousands of residents in Southern California were forced from their homes by a raging wildfire which remained unchecked early on Thursday as it pushed toward their mountain resort communities,” Reuters reported. This one is being referred to as the Cranston Fire, which some believe was ignited by arson. The blaze has balooned to cover 4,700 acres around 90 miles east of Los Angeles in the San Jacinto Mountains, the San Bernardino National Forest agency said on Twitter Thursday morning. It has also forced 3,200 people to evacuate in communities such as Idyllwild, Mountain Center and Lake Hemet as it destroyed five structures and threatened 2,100 homes, the agency said.

In preparation for this year’s wildfire season, California’s largest utility announced the opening of a new operations center in San Francisco. The Wildfire Safety Operations Center is part of PG&E’s Community Wildfire Safety Program, launched in March as an additional precautionary measure intended to reduce wildfire threats and strengthen communities for the future. Through the program, PG&E is bolstering wildfire prevention and emergency response efforts, putting in place new and enhanced safety measures, and doing more over the long-term to harden its electric system to help reduce wildfire risks and to keep its customers safe.

Lastly, California governer Jerry Brown proposed changes on Thursday regarding how the state handles utility fire liability, which would direct courts to consider whether the company was negligent or complied with regulations. Brown’s proposal would not apply to any incidents prior to 2018, according to Utility Dive. However, Assemblyman Bill Quirk also proposed a bill that would allow a review of last year’s deadly wildfires, possibly allowing utilities to escape billions in liability — so long as utilities were not found negligent.

 

 

There were also massive wildfires in Northern Canada in 2016.

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