FACTS

    California Governor Gavin Newsom has declared a state of emergency as dozens of fires, many sparked by a historic lightning siege of nearly 11,000 bolts, spread throughout Northern California.

    “We are deploying every resource available to keep communities safe as California battles fires across the state during these extreme conditions.”

    Gavin Newsom, Governor of California

    One group of fires, named the LNU Lightning Complex, now covers “46,225 acres in Napa and Sonoma Counties” and another, SCU Lightning Complex, covers 85,000 acres over several counties. Additionally, fires are burning northeast of Los Angeles and on the Nevada border, as well. California is experiencing what experts have said to be historic, record high temperatures, and tens of thousands of people are said to be without power.

    RESPONSE

    Newsom announced that the emergency proclamation will provide out-of-state resources, as well as help from the National Guard. Over 7,000 responders are working to contain the fires.

    Ivan Geronimo Gomez, 30, has been arrested on “suspicion of arson of forest lands” in connection to the Dolan Fire in Big Sur.

    Over 22,000 people have been ordered to evacuate Vacaville, where a Red Flag Warning has been issued. Some residents were said to be fleeing by foot in the night as the flames quickly spread towards their homes.

    “Looming in the background are the public safety power shutoffs that were infamous last year. And if that’s not bad enough, now we have to deal with a worldwide pandemic. In a fire season. With the power off.”

    Mark Ghilarducci, Director of the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services
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