Hundreds of homes were destroyed on Thursday, December 30 by fires in Colorado. The western state of the United States is suffering from high winds and facing a historic drought.
This state is experiencing a historic drought which greatly facilitated the spread of the flames. In Boulder County, hotels, shopping centers and more than 650 acres of greenery have gone up in smoke.
Gusts of more than 160 km / h were observed in some places, complicating the efforts of the firefighters.
Thousands of residents evacuated
Images broadcast by CBS showed a burning apartment building that firefighters were trying to put out.
Video from @BroomfieldPD shows how scary the #MarshallFire was as the sun set… and the devastation only got worse as the night continued.
More than 600 homes presumed lost on top of many businesses.@CBSDenver @CBSNews #Colorado
– Dillon Thomas (@DillonMThomas) December 31, 2021
Thousands of residents have been ordered to evacuate, especially in Louisville, a city of 20,000 residents. “Leave Louisville or your life will be in danger”, had insisted the meteorological services.
Another city targeted by a full evacuation order: Superior, 13,000 inhabitants, was covered Thursday in a cloud of dark smoke, according to images published on social networks.
home after home after home. I’m near Williams Field in Superior. pic.twitter.com/CadkFr32u0
– Tori Mason (@ToriMasonTV) December 31, 2021
An arid state
Like much of the American West, Colorado, an already arid state, has been struggling for several years with exceptional drought.
With global warming, the intensity and frequency of drought and heatwave episodes are likely to increase further, continuing to create ideal conditions for forest or bush fires. In recent years, the American West has experienced unprecedented fires, particularly in California and Oregon.
For Daniel Swain, a meteorologist at UCLA, it is “hard to believe” that these fires take place in December, a period usually not conducive to this type of event in the region.