MAJOR CALIFORNIA FIRES SCORCH FEDERAL FORESTS, YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, AND MAJOR CITIES: L.A. COUNTY A DISASTER AREA

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By Miriam Raftery

Photo left:  Los Angeles Air Ops via L.A. Fire Department; Jason Moore on Twitter

September 3, 2017 (San Diego) – The Border Fire near Dulzura is 100% contained. But across California, many far more major brush fires are blazing. Several local firefighting agencies have dispatched crews to aid in conflagrations across the state.

The La Tuna Fire, reportedly the worst wildfire in Los Angeles County history, has charred 5,900 acres, killed 3 people and caused evacuation of over 700 residents, Cal Fire reports. Governor Brown has declared L.A. County a disaster area and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has approved federal funds to help battle the firestorm.

Photo, right:  La Tuna Fire burning in Burbank behind Universal Studios, screenshot from Jason Moore’s Twitter feed

San Miguel Fire Department has sent an engine and two brush trucks to the La Tuna fire, tweeting images with a message, “Stay safe!” The Viejas Fire Department’s Engine 25 has also been assigned to the La Tuna Fire.

In Riverside County, the Palmer Fire is believed to have been caused by illegal fireworks.  It has charred over 3,000 acres.

The Helena Fire in Shasta Trinity National Forest has burned 8,940 acres and is 14% contained. (See photo left, from Cal Fire, which is assisting at the scene.

For full listings on all major fires in California under Cal Fire jurisdiction, visit Cal Fire’s incident page at http://www.fire.ca.gov/current_incidents.

There are also even bigger fires burning on federal lands in California, under jurisdiction of the U.S. Forest Service. Get info on these fires here:  https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/state/5/

Among the largest are Eclipse Fire and the Salmon August Complex Fire, which have charred over 80,000 acres and 48,000 acres respectively, both in Klamath National Forest.

The Pier Fire has scorched more than 17,000 acres in Sequoia National Park, while the Empire Fire and South Fork Fire have collectively burned nearly 12,000 acres in Yosemite National Park.

These are only some of the dozens of fires incinerating many of California’s most scenic and cherished wild places, as well as threatening populous urban areas amid a record-setting dangerous heat wave – a trend exacerbated by climate change leading to hotter, drier conditions across the west as well as more violent storms such as Hurricane Harvey caused by warming ocean surface temperatures.