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Updated every Friday.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Nov 16th

What happened this week?

Death toll rises in California's Camp Fire as number of unaccounted for leaps — live updatesAuthorities said late Thursday the death toll from California's Camp Fire has risen to 63, bringing the statewide count to 66. In addition, more than 600 people have now been reported missing, according to the Butte County Sheriff's Office. Read more  

What Started the California Fires? Experts Track the Blaze's Origins. As investigators try to determine what started the most devastating wildfire in California history, which has killed at least 63 people, the beginning premise is that human beings -through their mistakes, or their toys, tools and technologies - were probably behind it. Read more

Interesting Facts

All About Santa Ana Winds.  Santa Ana winds refer to a usually very hot and dry wind that blows from interior regions towards the coastline. While blowing dust is a pesky side-effect of these winds, the most publicized effect of the Santa Ana winds is their ability to quickly spread fires and knock out power. Read more 

What are the Santa Ana winds, and why are they such a wildfire hazard? Santa Ana winds can occur anytime from September to May, but they tend to be most dangerous in the fall, when summer droughts typically create the driest conditions, essentially turning the land into a tinderbox. And while the winds usually blow for just a few days on end, that's plenty of time for a tiny spark to spread into a vicious blaze. Read more 

ASU professor: After fires, Southern California could face mudslides. An Arizona State University professor said that once wildfires in Southern California are under control, the coastal region could face a different natural disaster: mudslides.Read more 

Policy Developments and Outlook

California's Deadliest Fires Could Have Been Mitigated By PreventionAs California’s fire season burst back into the headlines, President Trump generated controversy with a weekend tweet emphasizing the role of forest management in these fires:"There is no reason for these massive, deadly and costly forest fires in California except that forest management is so poor. Billions of dollars are given each year, with so many lives lost, all because of gross mismanagement of the forests. Remedy now, or no more Fed payments!" Read more

California's Wildfire Epidemic Is Blamed on Bad Building Decisions. California's deadly wildfires have a straightforward solution, experts say: stop building homes in places that are likely to burn - and make homes that already exist in those areas a whole lot tougher. "It's a land-use issue", said Alice Hill, a senior adviser for climate resilience to President Barack Obama. Without so many homes being constructed in vulnerable areas at the edge of the fores, "we would still have the fires. But we wouldn't have this kind of devastation." Read more 

California utility proposes wildfire safety measures. A California utility plans to replace 3,400 miles of overhead power lines with insulated wire to reduce the risk of them sparking when hit by tree limbs or other objects, the company announced Monday. Sparking power lines are one of the leading causes of California's wildfires. The Wildfires have killed dozens of people and destroyed thousands of homes in recent years. Read More

California Wildfires: Prevention, Safety Tips. Cal Fire, the state's firefighting agency, provided advice to help Californian's prevent a small spark from becoming a devastating wildfire. These safety tips, including how to prepare you property and family for wildfires, can save property and lives. Read more

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