Sunday, September 13, 2015

California Fires Worsen Again; A Town Is Basically Levelled.

A home burns in Middletown, California over the
weekend as a wildfire sweeps through the area. 
The long horrible western wildfire season got worse again over the weekend, as fires north of San Francisco and west of Sacramento, California intensified amid another heat wave that hit the state.

Many homes, apartments and buildings in and around Middletown, California burned.

An NBC news reporter drove through the middle of town as it burned around him and it is horrifying. You can see the video at the bottom of this post.

At least four firefighters were injured battling the blazes over the weekend, but latest reports indicate they will recover, which is good news.

It's getting into autumn now, so the chances of storms coming off the Pacific Ocean are due to begin to increase, at least in the Pacific Northwest. But there's nothing big coming in the near future, according to forecasts.

There's a chance of a bit of rain at times early this week in Oregon, Washington and the northern half of California, but I emphasis light rain, and it won't amount to much. Certainly not enough to squelch the fires.

Southern California will have to wait longer for substantial rain. Some rain - up to a half inch - might come this week as a dying tropical system brings moisture to the region. But this rain, too, will only put a temporary dent in the relentlessly dry landscape.

Also, the risk there is the Santa Ana winds that typically develop in the autumn. Those are hot, dry, strong winds that often trigger wildfires.

With the big drought out there, the Santa Anas could really drive terrible wildfires through heavily populated areas near Los Angeles and San Diego this fall.

The hope is a few rainstorms sneak into California before any Santa Anas start. That could help a little.

Still, no matter what happens, this is one of the worst fire seasons on record. Year to date, mid-September - more than 8.6 million acres have burned, the most since at least 2006, says the National Interagency Fire Center. 

Yeah, we're still definitely hoping for calm, rainy weather out west, aren't we?

Here's the NBC News report on the blaze aroud Middletown, California:

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