The Woolsey Fire that has spread from the Thousand Oaks, Calif. area across the 101 and into Malibu has grown to 70,000 acres, burning homes throughout the Santa Monica Mountains. The fire has dispersed thousands of people who were forced to evacuate as the inferno was flamed by pesky Santa Anna Winds.
The Inertia‘s Alex Haro, a longtime editor with the publication, is still determining the fate of his home above the iconic surf town after evacuating. During the peak of the blaze, Laird Hamilton posted on social media that he’d stayed near his home above Malibu with friend Elijah Allan-Blitz to help firefighters protect the nearby structures and posted some apocalyptic-looking imagery. “Now I know why I learned at an early age not to mess with mother nature,” Hamilton wrote. “There is too much ground to cover for the brave firefighters–so many of the members of the community are doing their best. I want to thank my dear friend @elijah_a.b who stayed behind with me and fought the fire at my house and my neighbors’. For now, he helped me keep the home standing. Most importantly is that the humans are safe.”
Indeed, officials with the Los Angeles County Fire Department told the media that this is some of the toughest conditions its outfit had ever witnessed.
“Our firefighters have been facing some extreme, tough fire conditions that they said that they’ve never seen in their lives,” Los Angeles County Fire Chief Daryl Osby said. Firefighters have been unable to build any sort of fire line around the blaze that’s burning the steep, mountainous foothills, but hope to take advantage of a shift in winds today. All told some 250,000 people have been misplaced by the fire.
The Woolsey Fire is just one of a number of fires ravaging the state. Our thoughts are with those affected by the fires.