The Devastating California Wildfires Are Now so Massive They Can Be Seen From Space
New satellite images from NASA taken Dec. 5 and 8 revealed the vast extent of damage in California caused by still raging wildfires.
The Current Situation in California
The images from NASA, as well as satellite images posted to twitter by a NASA astronaut, show how the plumes of smoke floating from California out to the Pacific Ocean can be seen from space.
Nearly 100,000 people have fled their homes, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.
The Santa Ana winds have fueled the five fires, the largest of which — the Thomas Fire in Santa Barbara — was only 10 percent contained by Sunday night.
How to Help
Local newspapers such as the San Luis Obispo Tribune have provided detailed lists of the various ways that people can help victims of the wildfires, and we've rounded up a few of them here.
The United Way of Ventura County, American Red Cross of Ventura County, and the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Services created the Thomas Fire Fund, and anyone can donate online.
Potential donors to crowdsourcing campaigns should be wary of potential fraud and theft. GoFundMe has verified 12 campaigns and created a centralized platform for people who wish to donate.
The Ventura County Disaster Relief fund supports local organizations that are providing temporary shelter and other emergency relief services.
The wildfires have threatened animals of all kinds, and pet lovers can help by supporting the Humane Society of Ventura County. The animal protection group urged supporters to give monetary donations instead of goods in a Facebook post, and people can donate on their website.
The Camarillo Animal Shelter in Ventura County has posted a list of the items they need most, including airline crates to transport animals that are being evacuated.