first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.Some undoubtedly are acts of man and not acts of God, but it’s too soon to start chronicling what went wrong or to start figuring out what we can do to protect ourselves and our fragile environment. At this time, with so many fires still blazing, we all can see for ourselves the great job thousands of firefighters are doing in the face of tremendous danger. Firefighters have the biggest, most important jobs of fighting fires. And over the weekend and Monday, crews did an admirable job of beating back the flames driven by 80 mph winds. But all of us can help make Earth seem less hellish. For one, just by helping others. More than a quarter-million people have been displaced from their homes, from San Diego to Santa Clarita. They need places to stay and some tolerance as people crowd the roads getting somewhere else. EVERY fall when the hot dry Santa Ana winds start to blow strongly through Southern California, residents brace for the inevitable: wildfires that bring a taste of hell to Earth. Sometimes the conflagrations are minor, focused in a small area. Sometimes they are not. But one thing is for sure: They always come. And sometimes they are like nothing we’ve ever experienced, such as that terrible 10 days in the fall of 2003, in which 10 major wildfires in five Southern California counties killed 22 people and burned nearly 750,000 acres, 3,626 homes and 1,184 outbuildings. Today, in the midst of what could be another record-breaking fire season, more than a dozen blazes are threatening homes and lives. Traffic on Monday was nightmarish for many. Evacuations and road closures all over Southern California are bound to make the next few days hard ones. Those who can help by staying away from freeways during high-traffic times should do so. And, most important, everyone can make sure no new fires get a chance to begin. Law enforcement cannot be everywhere to spot potential arsonists or people who are careless. Southern California might smell like brimstone and look like a view of Hades for the next few days, but there’s no reason it has to lack humanity.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

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