California’s Deadliest Fires in History

Azalia Munoz, Senior Spotlight Editor

November 8th, 2018. A calm day, and a small fire – all started what would soon be known to be California’s most deadly wildfire in history. The origin of the wildfire is still unknown, and experts are trying their best to determine what the source is – although it is hard, due to the fact that everything is either ash or engulfed in flames. The entire city of Paradise, CA is succumbed to ash like most of the surroundings. Hundreds of thousands of California residents were forced to evacuate the area to seek somewhere safe.

Many families only had a matter of hours to pack up everything that they could take with them. “I lost everything that I received from my mom, from my grandparents from the baby grand piano to china,” Ilene Mickens told CBS Los Angeles.  Pets were among the most neglected, left to either burn or starve – many shelters have been taking in these animals, and nursing them back to health. Over 52,000 people have been placed into shelters and in the homes of family members. More than 600 people are marked as unaccounted for, and the number only grows by the hour. Statewide over 65 people have died from the flames and destruction. Rescue teams have been sent with over 400 people searching for survivors.

More than 5,600 firefighters have been tasked with fighting the fire, risking their lives to salvage what is left of the homes. In addition to the firefighters, inmates have been tasked with this as well, with little to no training, and pay that is next to nothing. It is reported that inmates are paid around $2 a day to fight the fires.

Nothing could’ve prepared the residents or those giving aid from these massive destructive fires. Celebrities have felt the destruction just as much as anyone else (unless you’re Kim Kardashian and hired private firefighters to only protect her private neighborhood),  but celebrities such as Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth, who have lost their home – donated $500,000 to rebuilding the community of Malibu.

Below are some organizations to help with disaster relief.