12 million Southern California residents received a fire danger text alert

The freeway near the Thomas Fire in Ventura County.
(Image credit: Kyle Grillot/AFP/Getty Images)

With fires burning across several counties in Southern California, the state's Office of Emergency Services sent out its largest ever text alert to 12 million residents on Wednesday night, warning them of strong winds that could create extreme fire danger.

The alert was a response to criticism received in the wake of wildfires that swept through Northern California in October, killing at least 44. Residents there said they wished they had received an alert that there was a fire in their neighborhood, especially those who were asleep when the fire started. Because weather conditions in Southern California were expected to be similar to conditions in Northern California when those fires started, the state's Office of Emergency Services decided to send out the unprecedented alert to residents across seven counties.

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.

SUBSCRIBE & SAVE
https://cdn.mos.cms.futurecdn.net/flexiimages/jacafc5zvs1692883516.jpg

Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up
To continue reading this article...
Continue reading this article and get limited website access each month.
Get unlimited website access, exclusive newsletters plus much more.
Cancel or pause at any time.
Already a subscriber to The Week?
Not sure which email you used for your subscription? Contact us