Historic Los Angeles Brush Fire: Commentary

FEATURE PHOTO CREDIT / AFP PHOTO / JOSH EDELSON (Photo credit should read JOSH EDELSON/AFP/Getty Images

SEE THE SOURCE STORY FROM HUFFPOST HERE

Los Angeles Fire grows to 7000+ Acres

This US News story was posted in the HuffPost by Elyse Wanshel & Chris D’Angelo. The fire coursing through the mesquite around the edge of Los Angeles is now the largest in the history of this large metropolitan area.

Photo by PG/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images

With temperatures well above 100 degrees and tempestuous winds, it is just now coming under control, according to these reporters. So far, 4 homes destroyed and a lot of people evacuated.

Will the Fires Never End?

As of Sunday morning, the fire was reported as then 30% contained. Hopefully that percentage has increased as we go into the work week following the Labor Day weekend.

Mandatory evacuations, though now lifted, included homes in Los Angeles, Glendale and Burbank. Four firefighters suffered heat-related illnesses and one was treated for minor burns according to the report.

Driving the rural highways of North Idaho on Labor Day was like driving in fog…only it was smoke from forest fires outside the state of Idaho that blanketed the region.

From Personal Experience

Seeing these and other photos, I am taken back in memory to a Los Angeles brush fire on which I served with a fire crew flown in from Idaho. The day we arrived, 11 young men on another crew were caught in a flame rush that blew up on them in a mesquite-filled canyon. They all died. That was the summer of 1969, I believe. I was just 20.

The opposite shoreline on the Pend Oreille River driving along Hwy 2 westbound is hardly visible in the thick cloud of forest fire smoke covering North Idaho on Labor Day.

I remember climbing with a couple of crew members to the top of a ridge at night to overlook the night skyline of Los Angeles spread out like a sea of lights. Walking up out of the brush-covered scorched mountains of the Los Angeles National Forest, the urban sprawl seemed surrealistic to all of us.

Mesquite Fires are Treacherous, Explosive

When you add triple-digit temperatures to gusty, hot winds you have a very explosive situation in mesquite covered hills and canyons. Mesquite is a dense brush cover that is nearly impossible to run through. What makes it truly dangerous under the circumstances currently faced by Southern California, is the explosive nature of the gases contained in the leaves and bark of mesquite.

Forest Fires All Around

The ModernPrepper is written in North Idaho just across the border from the state of Washington. At the time of posting, Monday September 4, 2017, our valleys and lakes are heavily blanketed in smoke.

Only 1/4 mile across the bridge, the rural town of Priest River is barely visible in the fire-caused blanket of smoke covering the region.

But so far, we’ve been free from the devastation of local fires. The smoke here, I’m told is coming from blowouts in Montana and north of us in British Columbia. This is proving to be one of the more serious fire seasons in a long time, affecting the entirety of the Pacific Northwest and the Western coast of America.

The Cabinet Mountain Range normally very visible in this Selle Valley photograph taken just north of Sandpoint, Idaho, is barely visible in the fog-like blanket of forest fire smoke covering the region on Labor Day. Sorry, that’s a dirty windshield I’m looking through. :o)

All we can do is pray and hope that the flames don’t descend on us as well. And the prayers go out to the many people who have suffered and are suffering the consequences of forest fires in their neighborhoods.

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