Most of the country is watching in horror as wildfires continue to ravage Southern California.
Four major fires are destroying hundreds of thousands of acreage in the Los Angeles area and the brutal Santa Ana winds are fanning the flames throughout the region.
For the immediate future, things are looking bleak but there is a sliver of hope that the gusts will die down soon and emergency personnel will be able to contain the wildfires.
#SantaAnaWinds to intensify and become damaging overnight into Thu. Here are the projected wind gusts for Thu morning. Be prepared for downed trees/powerlines , blowing dust/debris, power outages, and very rapid fire spread. #LAWind #LAWeather #cawx pic.twitter.com/PniAv9LdZV
— NWS Los Angeles (@NWSLosAngeles) December 7, 2017
According to the National Weather Service, sustained winds were gusting to 66 mph Thursday morning at Boney Mountain in Ventura County.
Winds are expected to increase another 15 mph, spreading hot embers even further as humidity is hovering around the teens and even single-digits in parts of the region.
With great sorrow, we offer words of sympathy to all those affected by #wildfires in Los Angeles. We hope for the city’s speedy recovery from the effects of this disaster. #CaliforniaWildfires #California #LosAngelesfire pic.twitter.com/FkP99yS9wo
— LNG USA Summit (@LNGUSAsummit) December 7, 2017
ABC News reports that the Thomas fire – the first to ignite and the largest of the fires – has burned approximately 96,000 acres of land and is expected to intensify due to the increasing winds.
The Skirball fire is currently the smallest of the wildfires but is the biggest threat to the heavily-populated areas of Los Angeles and is drawing widespread attention around the U.S. and has struck unimaginable fear in the hearts of millions of L.A. residents.
The Creek and Rye fires also continued to burn Thursday with little containment.
— Scotland Yard CSI (@ScotlandYardCSI) December 7, 2017
Tens of thousands of SoCal residents have already evacuated and tens of thousands more went to bed – if they were able to – with the warning that they could find themselves in the middle of another wildfire as the Santa Anas are causing embers to spread and ignite more dry land with its hurricane-force winds.