California’s wildfire season started with a roar this year — and we’re only just approaching the critical months of October and November, which in recent years have brought some of the state’s deadliest and most destructive wildfires. Dry lightning in mid-August ignited the CZU, SCU and LNU Lightning Complex fires, which are now three of the four largest wildfires in California history, and they have yet to be fully contained. More than 7,400 fires have scorched 1.83 million acres so far, according to Cal Fire. In 2018, California’s worst fire year to date, 7,948 fires burned 1.98 million acres. So, how bad can the rest of the season get? What do wildland fire experts and firefighting agencies look at as they prepare for the rest of the season? And do past data reveal any significant patterns? Conditions this year are not looking good, according to experts. The meager rainy season left California’s landscape dried out early on in the year, and it has been parched further by heat waves during the dry months. Pair that with the blustery, dry Diablo winds that arrive around this time, and it’s a recipe for disaster, experts say. ‘Significant fire potential’ Predicting the wildfire… Read full this story
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