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  • The flames have consumed over 8,862 hectares in Sonoma county, near San Francisco. Oct. 26, 2019

    The flames have consumed over 8,862 hectares in Sonoma county, near San Francisco. Oct. 26, 2019 | Photo: Reuters

Published 26 October 2019
Opinion

The U.S state lives an extreme situation due to recent fires that have already devasted thousands houses and forest hectares.

Firefighters in California continue to combat several fires that have burned already large areas and keep 50,000 people evacuated from the path of destruction; meanwhile Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) power company has cut off the energy supply to two million people.

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Northern California is under a red flag alert because of the risk of rapid fire spread between Saturday night and noon on Monday, which has forced the PG&E to enact a third round of massive blackouts that will leave 850,000 homes and businesses out of power in 36 counties in central and northern California.

"This is definitely an event that we are calling historical and extreme. What makes it really special is the amount of time these winds are going to be maintained," David King from the National Meteorology Service of the Monterrey office, expressed.

The preventive blackout will affect over 30 counties, including San Joaquin, Marin, Mendocino (south), Napa, Monterey, San Mateo, and Humboldt.

"According to the authority conferred on me by the State Constitution, I hereby proclaim that there is a state of emergency in Los Angeles and Sonoma counties due to these fires," California Governor Gavin Newsom declared Saturday.

The Sonoma County Sheriff's Office said it is expected to be the largest evacuation operation to take place in the county in more than 25 years. "Winds are expected between 8:00 p.m. and midnight and are expected to be extremely strong," Brian Vitorelo of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection expressed. Two previous blackouts were made amid concerns that winds with gusts could interrupt or break down power lines and cause devastating forest fires.

More than 50 brigades conformed of 2,000 firefighters are working on different flame fronts. However, the fire continues to grow and emergency services have barely managed to contain 10 percent of the fires. Cal FIRE reported that a fireman and two people were slightly injured during operations.

As of Saturday, the flames consumed over 8,862 hectares in Sonoma county, near San Francisco. Winds that have been registered as high as 110 km/h, which spread the fires quickly and obstruct firefighters' work. At the same time, outside L.A city there is a forest fire that has already devoured more than two thousand hectares.

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