California gets control of worst fire event in state history

California gets control of worst fire event in state history

15 July 2008

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USA — Since June 20, the state of California has found itself continually battling wildfires however it appears things are finally improving.  Daniel Berlant, spokesman for the state’s Department of Forestry and Fire Prevention, or CalFire, said Monday, “We now have light at the end of the tunnel.”

A massive effort has helped to get the situation under control.  The California National Guard has been mobilized to help fight the fires.  Colorado too is aiding in the efforts with over 250 firefighters from here fighting in California, including members of the Colorado Air Force Reserve.  In all, over 20,000 personnel from across the western United States have been mobilized to help in the state. 

California’s wildfire season this year started unusually early due to tinder dry conditions throughout most of the state.  Most of the fires were started on June 21st when a massive lightning storm moved across the state sparking over 800 fires.  Thus far the wildfires have consumed over 860,000 acres of land – a number that appears to be a record since record keeping began in 1950. 

California Statewide Fire Statistics Total Fires at Peak: 1,781Total Fires Contained: 1,493*Total Active Fires: 288*Total Acres Burned: 861,385These numbers are total fires and acres that have occurred from state, local and federal firefighting agencies beginning June 20, 2008.
* Numbers reflect data as of 7/13 at 7:30 a.m.

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