Claimed to be entirely uncalled for, several wildfires raged unchecked across large parts of the western coast of the United States on Wednesday. The fires engulfed at least 5 small towns in Oregon, warning of death and destruction, as they still continue to blaze.
Winds gusting as high as 80km/h (50mph) gave impetus to dozens of sudden, catastrophic fires across a large swathe of Oregon and the neighboring Washington state. Unprecedented, primarily because these spots rarely ever experience such intense blazes because of the cool and wet climate, the towns Detroit, Blue River, Vida, Phoenix, and Talent, have been ravaged by the ferocious flames. The residents of Medford, Oregon have been evacuated as a worsened situation looms over the town.
Firefighters retreated from uncontrollable blazes in Oregon as officials gave residents “go now” orders to evacuate, meaning they had only minutes to leave their homes.
Officials in the Pacific Northwest said they did not recall ever having to deal with so many destructive fires at once in the areas where they were burning. Three prisons also had to be evacuated late on Tuesday.
Oregon Governor Kate Brown said in a news briefing on Wednesday, that “the blaze could bring the greatest loss in human lives and property due to wildfire in our state’s history.”
Over in Washington, the police have reported the death of a one-year-old boy, whose parents were badly burned as they tried to flee a fire. As of today, nearly 100 fires are raging across the west of the US, with 28 in California, where nearly 2.3 million acres have been burned and three people were on Wednesday confirmed dead.
Furthermore, a massive cloud of smoke has engulfed a major part of the state, leaving San Francisco in a smoky, orange glow. Though this phenomenon isn’t new, with the weather being considerably hotter and drier and the vegetation more fire-prone, the fires are speculated to worsen, as a possible effect of global warming.
With parts of California already put under a state of emergency, it is suggested that other regions must follow suit in order to prevent further damage and loss of life.