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Hazards - Essay Example

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California Wild Fires as Environmental Hazards Abstract Wildfires have been one of the most reported hazardous incidents that occur during the hot weather months. In California, wildfires are already seen as something that normally occurs and are mostly given attention to by the Fire Department, no matter how small or big…
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Download file to see previous pages Because of the large area that the fire covered, as many as 563 fire personnel, 39 fire engines, 20 fire crews, a helicopter, five dozers, up to nine water tenders, and four fire departments were working side-by-side in order to put a large fire under control. The management responses as well as recovery efforts were deemed successful because compared to other reported incidents in areas up to 400% smaller, the time spent in managing the fire in Flynn Creek Road was comparable in brevity, considering the large area where the wild fire occurred. California Wild Fires as Environmental Hazards Fires have been an integral part of ecosystems and human societies for as long as history has been known. When properly used, it can give a lot of benefits such as clearing lands for agriculture, oxidizing all possibly flammable organic materials, hastening the decomposition process of detritus, and inducing growth in forests (Omi, 2005). However, when fires are left to burn on their own and uncontrolled in rural or woodland areas, fired could gain enough power to destroy nearby buildings, acres of land, or large parts of forest areas, causing numerous damage not just in human settlements but also in the natural environment as well. Thus, it is essential that fires occurring in places that contain many flammable materials and things such as forests and woodlands be controlled as much as possible in order to prevent damages (Omi, 2005). One of the most well-known places often seen in news having reported incidents of uncontrolled fires is the State of California. Fire ecology has been most extensively studied in California, mainly due to its numerous and diverse ecosystems (Sugihara et al., 2009). Wildfires occurring during the hot summer months have been reported as a part of the complex interactions between the environment, the atmosphere, and the climate of California. Due to the natural occurrence of fires in its forests, many plants in California have evolved into fire-tolerant species, some of which even need the fires to complete their life cycles (Sugihara et al., 2009). Still, these wild fires are still needed to be controlled because aside from the potential dangers posed to humans and settlements, entire ecosystems could also get wiped out, disrupting the balance of nature. It is good to know that the number of ignitions reported each year is less important than the size of the area burned, due to the wild fires being controlled at the earliest time possible (Omi, 2005). The knowledge that wild fires are attended to by the Fire Departments give assurance to residents not just in California but also in other places that most wild fires are stopped before extending over larger areas. In one of the most recent reported and managed wild fires by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or CAL FIRE, a large area had to be attended by numerous fire personnel in order for the fire to be controlled at the least time possible. In Mendocino County in California, an area 195 acres and enclosed by Flynn Creek Road and the Comptche Ukiah Road near the Comptche Community caught fire October 1, at around 2:20 PM (California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, CAL FIRE, 2012). It was fully controlled October 4, at around 6:15 PM, 75 hours after it was first reported. Despite ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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