Scott Dworkin visited the Ventura County Sheriff‘s Department Air Unit as it battled the Thomas fire
PARAPUBLIC FIGHTING CALIFORNIA’S FIRES
The Thomas fire broke out in the early evening of December 4 near Thomas Aquinas College above Santa Paula at the beginning of what became a prolonged extreme wind event in Southern California. The blaze, fanned by the strong Santa Ana winds and fuelled by dry brush and extremely low humidity, rapidly spread from the foothills above Santa Paula down into the town, progressing to nearby Fillmore, Ojai and out towards the Pacific Ocean and the city of Ventura, where entire neighbourhoods were destroyed. The fire then crossed into nearby Carpentaria, Montecito and Santa Barbara, and at the time AIR International closed for press was burning in remote areas within the Los Padres National Forest.