OAKLAND, CALIF. - Californians coped Monday with fire, smoke, wind and power outages as firefighters continued to battle flames around the state.
Meteorologists report that another “wind event,” strong gusting winds, was expected Tuesday in Northern California. Rain doesn’t appear to be in the forecast anytime soon.
Residents are left bracing themselves for more darkness.
Starting Saturday night, Pacific Gas & Electric, the Northern California power company, cut power to nearly 1 million people out of fear that a spark on a power line could cause devastation. The firm said power may stay off through Wednesday.
The company’s role in devastating fires the past two autumns as well as with its decision to turn off the power has drawn criticism.
“What’s interesting about the fires at this moment is that it’s rather normal,” California Gov. Gavin Newsom said at a press conference Monday. “Doesn’t feel that way, but this is not abnormal, this moment in our state’s history. What’s not normal is the power shutoffs.”
Grappling with power outages and smoke has upended people’s lives, including celebrities in Los Angeles. LeBron James, the professional basketball star, tweeted that he and his family were evacuated and driving around looking for a place to stay.
Man these LA 🔥 aren’t no joke. Had to emergency evacuate my house and I’ve been driving around with my family trying to get rooms. No luck so far! 🤦🏾♂️— LeBron James (@KingJames) October 28, 2019
In Northern California, schools are closed in some areas, and in others, students sit in classes lit only by daylight from the windows. Stores in Oakland are running on generators. People in areas with no power sit in their cars with their engines running, trying to charge their cellphones and computers.
In Northern California, the powerful Kincade Fire in the wine country still burned, with about 5 percent containment of a 66,000-acre area that burned.
In Southern California, the fire near the Getty Museum, which houses a vast art collection and library, destroyed homes. The museum itself is famously prepared for fire – it's made of thick travertine stone and concrete, and has an underground 1 million-gallon water tank.
WATCH: California wildfires
But still, the fire managed to touch the edge of the museum’s grounds and burned eight homes nearby.
With firefighters from nearby states helping, residents know that the weather -- wind and rain, specifically – hold the keys on when and whether the crisis will end.