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Saturday, 15 November 2008

Wildfires Approach Los Angeles

California is gorgeous. The geography is that of the Mediterranean with its rolling hills, sandy beaches, and warm climate. The one thing that threatens a perfect environment is California’s high risks of natural disaster. The wildfires in California occur more frequent than floods, hurricanes, or tornadoes in any other state in the U.S.
The latest fire began Friday outside of downtown Los Angeles at Angeles National Forest covering 1,500 acres. It has forced most of the infamous freeways in the valley and interstates to close. Including Interstate 405, where singer, actress Brandy experienced a fatal car crash, killing a motorist and Highway 134 where celebutante Nicole Richie drove the wrong direction. She was consequently booked for a DUI charge. This outburst of wildfires is expected to reach the I-5 corridor. It carries power from plants in the Southwest and the Pacific Northwest to utilities in and around Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. Los Angeles County was declared a state of emergency by Governor Schwarzenegger on Saturday. To date about 6,500 acres have been burned, 10,000 people have been forced from their homes, and approximately 1000 homes have been destroyed.
After learning of such a travesty I can’t help but think, “It’s Los Angeles County!” Am I really supposed to feel all that bad when multi- million dollar houses are burned to the ground? Yes, it is sad to see your belongings go up in flames; especially valued jewellery like crystal brooches or those diamond earrings given to you on your anniversary or birthday, but it had to be said. They choose to build on top of mud sliding hills, another contribution to destroyed homes. Nearly all of the residents can certainly afford to rebuild. But I am concerned with those who are losing all that they have. Like the 500 mobile homes at Oakridge Mobile Home Park. Am I being insensitive or does this side note hold some validity. You tell me.

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