By: Alayna Smith
Anyone who has lived in California through the fall is all too familiar with the deadly wildfires that threaten the state annually. For Benicia residents, fire season has made its first major appearance of the year, with three brush fires sparking right in the heart of town on Sunday night, August 29th.
Around 8:00pm, the Benicia Fire Department was called in on a fire, and later discovered that there happened to be multiple lighting up in the same area. The fires began off Interstate-780, which goes directly between Benicia Middle School and Benicia High School. Considering the placement of the fire, it was an urgent problem. Engines from Vallejo, Fairfield, and Contra Costa had to be called in to assist with getting the fire under control.
Thanks to local fire units handling the situation with controlled urgency, the fire was fully contained only 40 minutes later with no reported injuries or damages to any structures. While the Benicia Police Department is still investigating the initial cause of these fires, it has been a rude awakening to what may lie ahead in approaching months for anyone in the area.
The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) reports that last year, “Nearly 10,000 fires had burned over 4.2 million acres, […] making 2020 the largest fire season ever recorded in California’s modern history.” (fire.ca.gov) In the last few years, California has seen a significant increase in the amount of fire damage. The fire season has begun to start earlier and end later, which suggests that this year could be disastrous.
While the fires in Benicia were located and under control in a matter of minutes, evidence suggests that this year has the potential to be the worst yet, as far as wildfires are concerned.