For the daily Brush Burning Index, 165 or higher is extreme.
The value of that index tomorrow (Thurs) in Los Angeles is an incredible 296, the highest it's ever been.
These scenes from the 405 today are unbelievable (CNN has some intense video as well). That's my daily commute -- seeing those hills completely engulfed in flame looks terrifying. That major artery serves some 500,000 vehicles per day (and it feels like at least 450k of them are *definitely* during my commute) -- the one other time it's been closed since I've lived here was such a citywide event that it had an official name: Carmageddon.
In actuality, it was a breeze to drive on Carmageddon -- especially going east to west on the 10. No one was out that day -- we got from Culver City to downtown in about 10 minutes. Today was a different story -- I can only imagine that, in addition to looking like a literal hellscape, it was a severe nightmare to be getting anywhere in the city today. I'm grateful that our office encouraged everyone to work from home and stay safe. I hope everyone else out there is staying safe too.
Granted, Los Angeles County is no stranger to fires: it's essentially an annual affair, that one or more of the canyons burn -- but the unusual ferocity of these fires is being compounded by:
* The extremely dry conditions of the vegetation here, thanks to drought and near-drought conditions for some time
* Severely dry air as well -- the humidity is under 10%
* Insane winds -- up to 70 mph Santa Ana winds since Monday night, set to reach 80 tomorrow. We just got a severe weather alert to stay alert and listen to authorities:
By the way... the CA wildfires can be seen from space. That's out of this world (literally).
So... do we still believe climates never change? 🤔