"We have enough water": California fire agency responds to Trump's 'bad environmental laws' tweet
Firefighters are currently battling blazes at 16 locations across the state as the hot weather, low humidity and strong winds are making their job tougher.
State officials on Monday said that the Mendocino Complex fire in California is the largest active wildfire in the state's history as the blaze has rapidly spread and scorched 283,800 acres of land — an area nearly the size of Los Angeles.
Shortly before the news of the deadly wildfire becoming the largest in the state was announced, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to inaccurately accuse the state officials of foolishly diverting water into the Pacific Ocean, instead of using it to douse the fire.
Trump tweeted on Sunday: "California wildfires are being magnified & made so much worse by the bad environmental laws which aren’t allowing a massive amount of readily available water to be properly utilized."
California officials and firefighting experts are, however, rubbishing the president's comments saying that they had enough water to fight wildfires.
"We have plenty of water to fight these wildfires, but let’s be clear: It’s our changing climate that is leading to more severe and destructive fires," Daniel Berlant, assistant deputy director of Cal Fire, the state's fire agency said on Twitter.
Many remained unclear about what the president meant by 'diverting water to the Pacific Ocean.' When the New York Times asked Governor Jerry Brown's spokesperson to clarify, he said: "Your guess is as good as mine."
The Mendocino Complex Fire, comprising of two fires in nearby areas, surpassed last year's Thomas Fire in the region which was declared as the largest in state history in 2017.
Reports state that firefighters are currently battling blazes at 16 locations across the state as the hot weather, low humidity and strong winds are making their job tougher. Over 14,000 firefighters and hundreds of army personnel are involved in the firefighting efforts across the state.
At least seven people have been killed in the deadly blaze till now in the northern region of California.
National Weather Service meteorologist Brian Hurley had reportedly warned that it does not appear that the conditions will improve any time soon as temperatures as high as 43C are being forecast in some of the affected regions, BBC reported.
A deputy chief with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CalFire), Scott McLean, on Monday said that the wildfires this year are "extremely fast, extremely aggressive, extremely dangerous."
"Look how big it got, just in a matter of days... Look how fast this Mendocino Complex went up in ranking. That doesn't happen. That just doesn't happen," McLean said.