New California Fire Seasons, What Are The Dangers?



These past few years in California have scarred families across the state, but as we enter a new and dangerous fire season, what can we do? Well, there are a lot of ways families can stay safe during the fire season. In California, we endure constant heatwaves, which have increased the fire seasons from one to practically year-round. There are many things people do without realizing that they can start a fire. For example, states, “Some classifications include smoking,… equipment, and miscellaneous.” 


Even something as simple as a toaster oven, if left unattended, can catch on fire. As we enter a new season for the famous Santa Ana Winds, fire dangers are very high. Increased wind speed will expand the chances of a fire spreading rapidly. Fire Captain Greg Barta with the Orange County Fire Authority states, “the most important thing to do is to be aware of your surroundings, and how whatever you’re doing can impact potential dangers.” 


Vincent, an eighth-grader at BYMS, said that “It can be kind of scary” to live in California. However, he also stated that “If we all do our parts, in the end, it will all be ok,” which to him adds a state of security. Another eighth-grader here at BYMS, Addison Walters, states that “It is definitely scary to live in California because you never know when a fire might happen or how bad it can be…” It is clear that living in California comes with its apparent dangers, but we all know that once everything passes, it will all be okay.


Fire Captain Greg Barta also says that some steps we can take to prevent fires are to “…not leave food that you’re cooking unattended.” He said that the fire department goes on a lot of “…actual fires, and many close calls” related to cooking fires. He also stated, “Sometimes people will plug multiple electronics into extension cords or sometimes they will plug two or three extension cords into one…”, resulting in many electrical fires. Also, having a fire extinguisher on hand is a great way to prevent fires, because you can extinguish them before they are large enough to spread.


In regards to the actual fire seasons themselves, Captain Barta says that the fire seasons now are spanning across the entire year. But the most popular seasons are what the fire department calls “August-through September to November.” The fires are more dangerous during these three months due to weather patterns, and the Santa Ana Winds.


Katherine Farer, the newly elected secretary of Bernardo, stated, “Knowing a fire could start at any time definitely means you have to be in survival mode all the time.” However, she also mentioned that it is a daily part of life here in California, and we’ve all learned to accept it.