The wildfires are all anyone is talking about on the west coast right now. From Washington to California, fires are raging and impacting the lives of millions.
In Oregon, thousands have been told to evacuate their homes. Washington has experienced a record amount of trees burning down, and California is dealing with some of the worst wildfires to date.
For those of us on the east coast, it’s hard to imagine the quality of life the other side of the country is experiencing. Jill Cowan, a Times reporter in Los Angeles, described the smoke and air quality as “oppressive”.
Not only are individuals dealing with the pandemic limiting indoor activities, but now poor air quality is eliminating the option to spend time outdoors.
“We’re in a pandemic and a heat wave, and we don’t have air conditioning,” said Kena Hudson to C
NBC, a mother in Oakland, CA. “We can’t open up the window, we’re trapped, we’re hot and no one can come over to play.”
If you haven’t already seen pictures of the spooky, orange colors replacing California’s normal blue skies, take a look below.
Some have described the skies in California as “apocalyptic”. As ash falls from the sky in some areas, thick smoke blocks out the sunlight in others. Rarely have so many Californians breathed such unhealthy air.
The health effects of such terrible conditions could be serious for many individuals. Some fear those with chronic respiratory issues will avoid seeking care because they fear exposure to the coronavirus.
We can only hope this wildfire season gets better soon for our fellow west coasters.