The Golden State of California is once again on fire, with at least 12 wildfires active and surging throughout the state. At present, the largest of the blazes seems to be the 76,000-acre Kincade Fire up in Sonoma County. And within the greater Los Angeles area, there are at least seven fires going – including Riverside’s Hill Fire and the Easy Fire near Simi Valley which sparked up on Wednesday.
The Easy Fire has quickly spread in size to over 1,300 acres as it has been driven by near hurricane-force Santa Ana winds, with gusts of 74 miles per hour.
The fire was raging in an area that has many ranches, causing a massive effort to save horses and livestock from the blaze. As CBS News caught a horse on camera seemingly running back towards the flames in order to find its family and lead them to safety.
Incredible video of a horse going back to rescue two more horses from the fire caught by @CBSLA @joybenedict and her crew. You'll see this and more on the @CBSEveningNews with @NorahODonnell tonight and continuing on @CBSLA and @CBSNLive pic.twitter.com/2reAZhunDe
— George Whipple Jr. (@gwhipp) October 30, 2019
The video has gone viral on social media – making a quicker spread than the flames themselves.
Dry autumn conditions coupled with strong winds are proving to be the perfect recipe for these wildfires to spread and multiply. There is also another fire called the Yosemite Fire which has flared up along a highway overpass only a short distance from the Easy Fire.
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— Maddie Spear (@MaddieCBSLA) October 30, 2019
A study published earlier this year in the journal Earth’s Future researched into a link between California’s increasing wildfire problem and climate change. California’s notorious winds have always made fires challenging, but there may be some connection with climate change. While no single fire event can be entirely blamed solely on climate change, researchers have said that higher temperatures do help to create a more fueled environment for the fires to flourish.
As the study reads, “In fall, wind events and delayed onset of winter precipitation are the dominant promoters of wildfire. While these variables did not change much over the past century, background warming and consequent fuel drying is increasingly enhancing the potential for large fall wildfires.”
The National Weather Service forecasts that the winds should start to ease a bit before picking up again. So far, hundreds of thousands of Californians have had to voluntarily evacuate, and it may continue to rise. Hopefully soon there will be a change in the winds and the fires will come under control.
Anastasia is an American writer and journalist living in Dublin, Ireland. Her Twitter is @AnastasiaArell5.