Lake Tahoe wildfires seemed to be manageable, so it was not

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – Last week, managers overseeing a firefighting operation in Lake Tahoe County in California thought they could attend earlier this week.

Instead, Caldor Fire crossed the Sierra Nevada on Monday, forcing all 22,000 South Lake Tahoe residents and thousands of tourists to spend the summer with the Alpine Sea off the coast of California-Nevada.

Major relocation would not be necessary if the authorities were able to throw many firefighters into the fire when it was small. This did not happen because Dixie Moto they were immediately crossing mountains some 100 miles (161 km) north, on the road to what is now the second largest fire in California history.

“I think Dixie’s style and size also influenced Caldor’s initial interest,” said Scott Stephens, professor of wildland fire science at the University of California, Berkeley. “It made the economy so rich that the Caldors got very little in the first few days.”

By the time Caldor approached Lake Tahoe two weeks later, there were 4,000 firefighters, several water jets and hundreds of firefighters and bulldozers.

But all energy and weapons were surpassed by the dry season, blowing low winds and massive forests to burn, fire experts about half said. And with resources already being extended to the west and to other countries, he said the long season will intensify as exhausted firefighters fight major battles that start early and last a long time.

“Mother Nature is calling for our cards to be able to overcome and burn in this difficult time,” said Timothy Ingalsbee, a former federal firefighter who is now leading Oregon. Integrated Fire Brigade, Security and Culture, which encourages working with wildfires instead of accidentally extinguishing them.

Caldor’s fire broke out on an unknown cause on August 14 in the foothills east of California’s capital, Sacramento. In the first few days, about 240 firefighters were dispatched, compared to 6,550 firefighters battling Dixie’s fire at the time.

It was less than four days later that Chief Fire Chief Cal Thom Porter said firefighters shifted 30 vehicles from Dixie Fire to Caldor Fire. One night, the engine and firefighters were about three times over. But by then the fire had already started through the Grizzly Flats, destroying many of the town’s homes of about 1,200 people.

“We are moving as much as we want, we are sharing experiences,” Porter told reporters on August 18. But he acknowledged that “we are having a very difficult time” because things were widespread throughout the West.

Officials could not say when and how firefighters would be, but Cal Fire was convinced there was a shortage, said Ken Pimlott, who retired as director of the agency in 2018 and lived a few miles from the start of the fire.

“Initially, this was not very important because there were other threats to another fire that was high,” Pimlott said.

When a fire broke out in Lake Tahoe with its crystal-clear waters attracting tourists from all over the world, it destroyed hundreds of homes and other buildings and left the firefighter aflame.

However, authorities predicted earlier last week that they could set fire to Lake Tahoe Lake. They widen the ridges deep enough to use a barren stone covering the ridges of mountains that have been a barrier to fires in the past. Meanwhile, their only hope was to provide citizens with false security, leaving many busy packing their lives in bags when the evacuation order came on Monday.

Chad Hanson’s John Muir Project says firefighters are foolish to think they can put out fires based on the expected winds.

“It is obvious that under these conditions fires will continue to go there. That is why it is difficult for me to imagine why anyone would think otherwise,” says Hanson, who often opposes experiments in forests.

Firefighters think they have made good progress over the weekend, says Jason Hunter, a spokesman for firefighters at Caldor Fire. But then the changing climate was a “strong storm” that ignited a blazing fire.

“The weather, that’s what it boils, that’s what changed,” Hunter said. Containment exposure is a “moving target” based on a change in circumstances, he said. Caldor Fire’s fire engine has been restored until September 13th.

Experts agree that the conditions are dangerous because the drought has been exacerbated by a series of heat waves that have wreaked havoc on humid winds with dry winds blazing flames and boats sometimes for miles or more.

Ingalsbee said.

Firefighters were evacuated by changes in local winds that set fires in Tahoe Valley, said John Battles, of the University of California, professor of wildlife at Berkeley.

Firefighters have been very good at predicting the weather and how much fuel will burn, but they still can’t predict the fires of the fires – some of which are caused by the same fire – with 10 different computers that offer a lot of contradictions, he said.

“They are trying to predict the wind on the mountain. This is the hardest place we have, “Battles said.” That’s why you feel like you don’t know what they’re doing. “

He added: “When you light a fire the size of Caldor, you know.”

Caldor’s fire is the second-largest fire in Sierra Leone. The first was the Dixie Fire that started in mid-July near the town of Paradise and has grown to 1,300 kilometers (3,367 kilometers), four times more than Caldor.

Such fires come at the end of the year when the weather is extremely dry and the days are cold, with high temperatures and eventually rain and snow have helped firefighters, says Char Miller, a professor at Pomona College who has written extensively on firefighting.

But California has received less rainfall than in the past two years and there is no guarantee that it will come this time to help firefighters. “This could burn until October,” Miller said.

However, fire experts say the biggest problem is not drought or climate change, but larger forests that could benefit from fires – as long as they are set up or allowed to become too hot in the summer or fall before the authorities explode.

Firefighters still have about 95% of the fires, but they are the ones fleeing the worst damage, Pimlott said. As the fire spreads, firefighters may need to prioritize protected areas while lighting fires around them, he said.

“It’s a difficult pill to swallow all of us in the firefighting area, because we want to light a fire,” he said. “We can’t do this on any fire, because of what we’re going through.”

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