An Update on the California Wildfires Spreading Across the West Coast

In El Dorado, California, a gender reveal party using a “smoke-generating pyrotechnic device” set off the wildfires that are now spreading rapidly across the west coast. People gathered in the El Dorado Ranch Park to share a special family moment, finding out the gender of a new child. According to CNN, a video captured a couple with several children walking toward an open space to light the device as part of the festivities. Soon, the flames were uncontrollable, spreading across the brushes around them and creating a massive wildfire that is now rapidly spreading across the western states. These fires are quite literally tearing through the west, wreaking havoc on Americans and their homes in states like California, Oregon, Washington and Arizona. The El Dorado fire as well as several other California fires have spread to thousands and thousands of acres, creating an unexpected natural disaster.

The families from the gender-reveal party incident were able to escape in time, but other victims of these fires needed to be rescued. Tuesday night, the Red Cross helped 15,000 people by providing them with safe emergency refuge from the fires. As the Red Cross helps evacuees, they are also ensuring these people have proper medical care and survival needs. The Red Cross suggests that all people affected by wildfires should obey mandatory evacuations quickly, have an emergency kit ready, and stay informed by listening to the local news and radio channels for updates and important information. Several rescue operations have taken place, as members of the national guard have been able to save almost 400 citizens from the dangers of these fires and their collapsing homes. 13 hikers were saved by helicopters in four different affected locations of the Creek Fires in Sierra National Forest. First responders are doing all they can to save people from these fires. However, it is difficult to halt the progression of these fires given the triple-digit heat and the naturally dry climates in that part of the country. It has also proven difficult for helicopters to manage rescues with the abundantly smoky skies they face near the sites of the wildfires.

fire truck Photo by SVP Studios from Unsplash While the fires have spread, they are still rampant in California and especially destructive in Oregon and Arizona. The disaster continues as residents are being instructed to evacuate. Wednesday morning, California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada and Arizona were all put under “red flag” warnings, indicating that those states are in “unstable fire conditions.” Oregon and Arizona residents have suffered from incinerated homes after several emergency evacuations. Portland’s officials reported more than 500 fire incidents since Monday, and firefighters are moving all around the state assisting with the continuing fires. Officials hope to see an improvement in conditions later in the week. The El Dorado, California wildfire has increased its containment level to 23 percent, which is an improvement for the California fires. As evacuees of these Western states wonder whether they have homes to return to, officials are doing their best to assess the situation.

Police officers, firefighters and both local and national officials are working together to fight for the safety of these people as the fires threaten and destroy communities across the west coast. As of Sep. 9, at least seven people have died as a result of these West Coast Wildfires as reported by the New York Times. Although some details and answers to many citizen’s questions are unknown, the majority of the people have been rescued or able to escape, and officials are hoping it stays that way as the fires become more contained.

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