CALFIRE calls this a “fire year” rather than season

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CALFIRE Director & Fire Chief Wednesday
CALFIRE Director & Fire Chief Wednesday

“We are not just in a fire season, but we are in a fire year,” said CALFIRE Director and Fire Chief Joe Tyler in a press conference Wednesday.

“We have burned 197,000 more acres this year than we did last year,” said Tyler, “in the last 24 hours across the state there have been 44 new wildland fires, and between July 4th and July 5th, 227 additional wildland fires.”

The Shelly Fire in Siskiyou County is one of those along with the Bogus Fire and the Mina Fire near the Mendocino County border Trinity County.

“Predictably, because of the rains, those late rains in particular, a lot of grasses is turning into brush fires,” said Governor Gavin Newsom, adding, “So these tend to burn out but move pretty quickly. That said, lightning is not our friend.”

“It’s important to note that 95% of all wildfires are human caused,” said Tyler, “and they are currently igniting in light, flashy, cured grasses that are spreading to the brush and timber. And our winds and the recent heat wave have exacerbated the issue, consuming thousands of acres. So we need to be extra cautious in these hot, dry and windy conditions because they often prompt fire weather watches and red flag warnings.”

“This is my plea to you,” Tyler continued, “please create a wildfire action plan that addresses escape routes, meeting points, animal arrangements, and a communications plan with your family. Listen to the guidance of law enforcement and our firefighters for evacuation warnings and orders.”

Also, have alternate plans prepares, because fires could close your main evacuation route.