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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Thu Jan 2, 2020, 07:11 PM

4. Speaking as a Californian: arsonists really exist, and they love watching their work

Fire investigators want to know the actual causes of fires, as it is a serious matter with lives at stake. They can pinpoint causes, and they can track the work of an arsonist across a region even if they can't always catch them. Fires that spot all along a highway route are a major clue of an arsonist's work and they all have their "signatures."

California and Australia both have large swathes of area known for their drought ecology. They call theirs the bush and the outback, and we call ours chaparral. Eucalyptus trees, which were transplanted to California from Australia, are born to burn, but so are many other native plants there and here.

During a prolonged drought, it all becomes a tinderbox. There are some cases of spontaneous combustion, dry branches rubbing together in dry heat. Hot dry winds accelerating downhill, gathering ever more heat -- in California we call them Santa Ana winds, and they magnify the danger a fire will start, then magnify its spread. Lightning strikes are a real danger.

The human/environment interface is very important. Our electrical grid gets blown by high wind, power lines rubbing and sparking. Gas and electric appliances can malfunction. Trucks dragging chains that spark along the road. Equipment, whether power tools that generate their own heat and sparks, or even hand-held shovels that can spark when they strike rocks -- all have been known to cause wildfires.

Nearly everyone in California knows better than to start a campfire or bonfire in a restricted area, or in the wind. Yet some college students did just that on their private college campus a number of years ago, setting off a major regional fire that killed a couple of people. They were either idiots or non-Californians, probably the latter. I'm sure they were very sorry.

Anyway, arsonists do it on purpose. Perhaps some arson inside cities is targeted, for murder or revenge or insurance, but otherwise what you have is sick minds who love the sheer power and destruction. They must feel like gods. Like the very gods themselves.

What you have presented is, I am sorry to say, a combination of nutball conspiracy theory and disinformation. It serves no one to propagate it.

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Arrow 6 replies Author Time Post
OhNo-Really Jan 2020 OP
Farmer-Rick Jan 2020 #1
OhNo-Really Jan 2020 #2
bullwinkle428 Jan 2020 #3
LineNew Reply Speaking as a Californian: arsonists really exist, and they love watching their work
Hekate Jan 2020 #4
ansible Jan 2020 #5
Farmer-Rick Jan 2020 #6
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