Mendocino Wildfire Becomes California's Largest, and It's Still Growing

Mendocino fire racing at unprecedented speed into the record books

Crews will be leaving this week to head to California where the Mendocino Complex fire had grown to 283,800 acres Monday evening, earning its place as the largest wildfire in modern California history. The state's firefighting agency said it's had no complications accessing water, while fire experts said the state's hot, dry and windy conditions are to blame for the infernos, not any water policy.

While supporting the overstretched California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE), they "will be accompanied by experienced wildland fire strike team leaders and crew bosses from wildland fire management", NORTHCOM said in a statement.

"It is extremely fast, extremely aggressive, extremely risky", McLean continued. And parts of Colusa, Lake, and Mendocino counties have been evacuated.

A firetruck rushes past flames that overran a road at the River Fire (Mendocino Complex) in Lakeport, California, U.S. July 31, 2018.

Monday, she was glad she didn't, because she was able to call for help, when flying embers caught the house across from her on fire, then the hill behind her house.

Another major fire, Ferguson, has left two dead and forced the closure of part of the Yosemite national park, and is now only 38 percent contained.

Sources: Satellite imagery from Copernicus (Sentinel-2), fire perimeters and largest wildfires data from CalFire, building footprint data from Microsoft. The current spate of wildfires happens to be within range of large Northern California lakes and the state's biggest river, McLean said.

The Mendocino Complex Fire is one of over a dozen large fires burning in California at the moment.

The fire is burning in mostly rural areas, though 143 buildings have been destroyed, including 75 homes, and 26 other buildings have been damaged.

The president, offering no proof of his claims, said the blazes "were made worse by the bad environmental laws which aren't allowing massive amounts of readily available water to be properly utilised".

He then claimed that the water is "being diverted into the Pacific Ocean".

"Let's be clear: It's our changing climate that is leading to more severe and destructive fires", said Cal Fire spokesman Mike Mohler. In addition, "the rates of mortality from fire, insects, and disease are about three times as high on national forest lands as they are on private lands regulated under California's strict environmental laws", he said.

The fire authorities insisted that they have ample water to fight California's catastrophic wildfires, contrary to Trump's controversial tweet.

On Sunday, 140 fire managers and specialists from Australia and New Zealand underwent special training and were issued safety gear at the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise before being deployed to fires in the Pacific Northwest and California.

In the meantime, Governor Jerry Brown and other state officials warned that the state is expected to endure record-breaking wildfires going forward.

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