After the southeastern United States was ravaged by a number of incredibly powerful storms earlier this year, it looks as though California is next on Mother Nature’s hit list.
For much of 2017, California has been inundated with wildfires raging in the rural suburbs of the state’s most populous cities. The often uncontrolled blazes have been wreaking havoc on fire response teams for months, with arid and windy weather adding to the difficulty factor for these brave men and women.
Now, these infernos are racing rapidly toward the urban hub of Los Angeles, with the iconic 405 freeway forced to partially close as spreading fires have already reached parts of Ventura.
“More than 1,000 firefighters battled an unrelenting wildfire on Wednesday that threatened more than 12,000 homes in and around Ventura, the biggest of several uncontrolled Southern California blazes fanned by intensifying dry Santa Ana winds.
“The Thomas Fire raged in the foothills above and in the city of Ventura some 50 miles (80 km) northwest of Los Angeles, fire officials said late Tuesday. The blaze, which began on Monday, had charred more than 50,000 acres, they said.
“The fire, which was entirely uncontained, was being whipped by unpredictable Santa Ana winds, which blow in from the California desert. Wind gusts were forecast to top out at 70 miles per hour (115 km per hour) on Wednesday and remain strong through the week.
“Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti declared a state of emergency while 11 Los Angeles Unified schools canceled Wednesday classes.”
These wildfires have been a staple of life in some of the more rural locales of the ultraliberal state, but a flaming disaster of this magnitude hasn’t ever struck the metropolitan Los Angeles area in recorded history.
As of this writing, Bel Air and other wealthy neighborhoods are already under a mandatory evacuation order, with no end in sight. California will likely be left with billions of dollars in damage once all is said and done, and the current, thankful lack of fatalities would be a miraculous reality to uphold as these hellish flames continue their march into the downtown area.