Lake Fire: San Bernardino Hosts Surprise Blaze Along Arizona Border — Is Global Warming To Blame?

A lake fire erupted in San Bernardino on April 6 and has now consumed over 2,200 acres of land along the Arizona and California border. Originally called the Pirate fire, for the evacuation of the residents of Pirate Cove, the locals renamed it the Topock fire after it spread on Thursday and encompassed more of the county.

The blaze is now reportedly 40 percent contained, with fire crews burning away surrounding areas to deprive it of the fuel it needs to continue spreading. The dubbing of the blaze as a lake fire was inspired by the fact that it crossed the Colorado River at a wide section and caught in San Bernardino.


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The blaze was a surprise to many, such as Aaron Lewis of Pirate Cove (not the lead singer of the rock band Staind).

“When I opened the front door, the other side of the river was painted orange. The flames were 30 or 40 feet high. The fire department was already there, going through it. They’ve had fires here before, but I never thought it would get this big. The fire departments have done a good job. They were at full manpower out here (Thursday) morning, and they had a lot of people ready to go.”

It seems the lake fire in San Bernardino is nothing new to the residents in the area, likely due to the drought in California and surrounding states. The lack of water is mostly due to the drying out in lakes in the Northwest. Too much water was said to be coming from it and not enough is replenishing it, leading to the water levels dropping almost below the opening in the dam.

As a result of this lack of water, and the rise in temperatures likely due to Global Warming, areas like Arizona and California are especially susceptible to fires, and last year played host to some of the highest heat waves in recorded history.

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Temperatures for the area this week are expected to rise into the 90s, with a possible precipitation that might help douse a portion of the wildfire. Route 66 may be closed if the lake fire between San Bernardino and Arizona can’t be stopped soon, and evacuations may continue into next week.

A possible solution to the rising temperatures may be, as former Vice President Al Gore has called it, an “inconvenient truth.” Pollution and the resulting greenhouse effect are allegedly making the problem worse as carbon emissions from motor vehicles and factories combine.

China is already feeling the almost literal burn, as they have stopped accepting our plastic exports to help minimize the pollution that they are already experiencing. Car manufacturers are also pushing for electric and alternative fuels in future models, although the use of oil might never be completely eliminated.

The resulting heat from what we’ve already done has already been the source of blame for the melting of the polar ice caps, and the dryer parts of the world are seeing almost lethal temperatures.

As fire crews continue to fight the lake fire along Route 66 in San Bernardino, it’s unknown how the fire started. It may have simply been careless campers along the Pacific Crest Trail, which runs from Mexico to Canada, or Global Warming at its worst.

[Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images]