California experiences its second wave of summer fires in full heat wave

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The state of California (USA) is suffering its second wave of fires of summer, in the middle of a heat wave in which temperatures much higher than usual have been registered and only a few weeks after the first one was declared, in mid-August.

Unlike the first wave, when the fires were concentrated in the north of the state, this time the worst part is being taken by the center and the south, with two large fires burning near Los Angeles and San Diego, and a third declared in the Sierra Nevada.

This third, that of the sierra, is the one that spread the fastest this Monday, burning two dozen houses in the small town of Big Creek and forcing completely evacuate Auberry’s population of 2,500.

In addition, the fire forced the helicopter evacuation of more than 200 people they were in the popular camping area of ​​Mammoth Pool.

Since it started Friday, the Creek Fire – as it has been christened by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) – has already burned 32,000 hectares and the ten fire crews working there have yet to make any progress on containment.

Llamas devour a mountain near Yucaipa, in the San Bernardino National Forest, in California (USA).
KYLE GRILLOT / EFE

Caused by fireworks at a party

Simultaneously, another fire burns in San Bernardino, in the vicinity of Los Angeles, which has swept 3,000 hectares and that began on Saturday morning because of a “pyrotechnic device” used at a party, according to the firefighters, who have it contained in 7%.

The third major fire started this weekend has also been burning since Saturday in a green area east of San Diego, near the border with Mexico, and has already calcined more than 4,000 hectares.

The flames are spreading very easily because of the dryness of the ground -Many parts of California have hardly received rainwater for months- and the extreme temperatures that are being experienced by the heat wave, which in some cases is exceeding 40 degrees.

Firefighters prepare to fight the fire near Yucaipa, in the San Bernardino National Forest, in California (USA).
Firefighters prepare to fight the fire near Yucaipa, in the San Bernardino National Forest, in California (USA).
KYLE GRILLOT / EFE

The intense heat has also prompted the state’s leading electric power provider, Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) to announce that it may have to resort to service outages deliberate to prevent the system from overloading, and as a preventive measure against new possible fires.

This new wave of fires is added to the one declared on the weekend of August 15 and 16, when a large part of the state electric storm nothing usual in California in which 10,800 lightning strikes fell, but hardly any rain, which together with a heat wave and the dryness of the land, led to thousands of fires being started.

Two of these fires, one east of San Jose and one in the Napa wine country, are the second and third largest in the history of the state, And after fighting them for several weeks, the firefighters now have them more than 90% contained.

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