California drought brings wildfires "outside any normal bounds".

Guardian: “California is facing wildfires “outside of any normal bounds” as a historic drought turns drying brush and trees into a perfect tinderbox, officials have warned.”
“The state recorded 665 wildfires from 1 January, about three times the average of 225 for this time of year, according to figures compiled by Cal Fire, the state’s department of forestry and fire protection.
….Many of the fires recorded up to 8 March were unusually big, roaring through up to 40 hectares a time. Some 3,000ha have been destroyed so far this year, compared with 2,000ha last year, which already ranked as a bad year for fire.
Even before this year’s drought, forest officials were reporting a longer fire season, and more catastrophic mega-fires, in California and other western states. Half of the worst fires in recorded Californian history have occurred since 2002.
….The agency is also working to stockpile water for fighting fires. Fire crews typically rely on helicopters scooping up 1,500-litre buckets of water from ponds and streams to put out flames. But many of these have already dried up because of the drought, and officials say crews may have to fly further in search of water.”