On Saturday, Donald Trump issued a state of emergency in California as deadly wildfires continue to rage out of control from Mendocino County to San Diego. The president has issued a statement declaring that he has given the approval for the Federal Emergency Management Agency to assist in helping California’s firefighters as they continue to fight the flames that have been fueled by dry brush.
As NBC News reports, the Office of Emergency Services in California have said that just over the past week alone 102,028 acres throughout the state have been ravaged by fires. The worst damage so far has been in Shasta County, which has seen the destruction of 48,313 acres and which caused the evacuation of thousands of people.
Governor Jerry Brown has officially declared a state of emergency in California and on Friday sought federal emergency aid. During a press conference that took place on Friday, California Fire Chief Ken Pimlott explained that the culprit behind the recent spate of wildfires was drought-stricken brush and implored people in the vicinity of these fires to evacuate.
“Evacuate, evacuate, evacuate. Pay very close attention to social media, websites, local television and radio broadcasts.”
Due to the severity of these wildfires, Pimlott said that the first goal of firefighters is to try and stave off fires when they first begin to keep them from getting out of control, noting that “our first priority always is the initial attack of new fires.”
Shasta County alone now has 3,400 firefighters working in the area to try and contain the blaze there, with many of these coming from San Diego County to help. However, San Diego County itself has its own issues and on Friday was busy fighting a 240-acre brush fire in Pasquale.
Besides San Diego County and Shasta County, Mariposa County currently has a 46,675-acre blazing across it, which is reported to only be one-third contained at the moment, while Riverside County has a fire spanning 12,300 acres in Cranston, with just 17 percent containment estimated.
Meanwhile, the Carr Fire continues to rage out of control and is only 5 percent contained, according to officials. This fire was caused by a vehicle that had a mechanical failure and has so far burned out 500 structures, with a remaining 5,000 reported to still be under threat. The Carr Fire has also left Fire Inspector Jeremy Stoke dead as he attempted to fight the blaze.
Now that Trump has pledged his support to aid firefighters in California, it is hoped that the many wildfires still raging across the state will be contained in the days to come.