The National Weather Service forecast shows that smoke from the California wildfires has traveled as far as New York City.
California is currently battling 17 wildfires that have already killed eight people and left thousands of others homeless. The U.S. Forest Service said that there are 135 wildfires burning in several states over 1.6 million acres of private, tribal, and federal land.
The smoke has spread more than 3,000 miles to the East Coast, and at least 6,000 firefighters are working to contain the wildfires.
As of this morning, 135 #wildfires are burning on 1.6 million acres of private, state, tribal, and federal land. Approximately 6,000 of the USDA Forest Service #firefighters are assisting with fighting these fires. pic.twitter.com/5qBgxNMXoG— U.S. Forest Service (@forestservice) August 3, 2018
Wildfires in California have destroyed thousands of homes. Smoke can spread when the wind lifts it into the air, carrying the smoke as it travels.
The wildfire smoke that has spread across the U.S. is harmless provided it stays where it is currently, which is at least one mile above the ground. However, the smoke could be pulled down by the jet stream, which may cause respiratory problems for people breathing it in. The atmosphere could also be polluted with toxic chemicals.
The Mendocino Complex fire is the largest in California history and has already destroyed at least 300,000 acres. The fire is 60 percent contained as of Friday.
The people who work so hard and risk their lives to fight these wildfires every day are true heroes. Their diligence and commitment to such a dangerous job must not go unnoticed.
Banner/Thumbnail Photo Credit: Reuters/Jim Urquhart