Vice News Tonight visited devastated Redding neighborhoods during the beginning of cleanup operations after the Carr Fire brought a destructive “Firenado” through the area. In the video (shown above), they showed the plight of a few who represent the more than thousand people who lost their homes in what is now the 6th most destructive fire in California’s history.
The video shows crews rummaging through the remains, making sure there aren’t any toxic remnants in the burnt rubble. Homeowners show off the area that was one their home and neighbors show their emotional response to seeing their neighborhood destroyed.
This video illustrates the life of just two people affected by the Carr Fire, which there are many more out there. Here’s what Vice News Tonight said about the video:
REDDING, CA — Three weeks ago, a blazing wildfire cut a twisting path through a subdivision here, destroying some homes completely and leaving others untouched.
The Strickland family left their home just before a tornado of fire ripped through their neighborhood. But they’re one of the lucky few whose house is still standing.
After traveling through 215,000 acres, the Carr fire has claimed 8 lives and destroyed more than 1,000 houses. The sheer acreage it covered made it one of the largest wildfires in the state’s history.
Now, the cleanup effort has begun.
Contractor crews hired by the state are moving through the rubble, looking for items that might leave behind dangerous chemical residue. Some of those toxic remains include the old houses that might contain asbestos, the melted fire detectors that could produce low levels of radioactivity, and any partially burned propane tanks at risk of combusting.
The clean-up crew’s ultimate goal is to leave the lot of charred home as close to habitable as possible, regardless of if residents choose to rebuild or sell. And as homeowners return to survey the damage, many are confronted with vivid memories of the fire.
“You’re just constantly reminded of all of these families that don’t have homes anymore,” said Taylor Strickland, 23, whose home was miraculously left intact.
“It doesn’t burn a certain thing,” Strickland said of the fire. “It takes what it wants, when it wants, how it wants.”