United States: unprecedented fires plunge San Francisco into darkness

The famous San Francisco bridge under the orange sky caused by the fires, September 9, 2020. Philip Pacheco / Getty Images / AFP

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3 min

Historic fires ravage forests in Oregon, Washington State and California.

The city of San Francisco found itself plunged into near darkness on Wednesday due to fumes from forest fires.

A distressing situation for the inhabitants.


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With our correspondent in San Francisco,

Eric de Salve

The fires that have hit the entire west coast of the United States for several weeks, from the Canadian border to the Mexican border, are absolutely unprecedented with already eight dead and 10,000 square kilometers gone up in smoke in

California alone

, an absolute record .

San Francisco residents who had already been unable to breathe for three weeks were plunged into unprecedented orange darkness on Wednesday. 

It is as if the sun had not risen over the city, at night in broad daylight.

Posted on a hill, Mickael incredulously observes this immense cloud of ocher smoke which plunges the Californian city into darkness.


It's apocalyptic.

It feels like a Ridley Scott movie.

It is 1:30 p.m. and everyone is riding with the headlights.

It's completely crazy,

 ”he observes.

"I have lived here for a long time and every year it gets worse"

A little further Andrea, sitting on a bench, anxiously watches the ashes fall from the sky.

When she woke up this morning, this nursery nurse initially thought she was getting the wrong time.


I thought it was 5 am and not 7 am.

I couldn't believe it!

It's depressing.

These years of drought, it is global warming that is catching up with us.

And it's only going to get worse.

I have lived here for a long time and every year it gets worse.



Between the fires and

the Covid-19

, it's starting to give a lot of reasons not to go out,

 ” comments a resident, taking a photo of the threatening sky of San Francisco, still confined since March.

In a video message, Mayor London Breed calls on residents not to panic.

These fires are more than 150 km from the city where the situation is much more serious.

Thousands of evacuations

take place and hundreds of homes are destroyed.


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  • United States

  • Natural disasters

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United States: California devastated by deadly fires