(first published 9.25.11) This picture was taken just a few miles SE of Austin a couple of weeks ago. Last I read, there were almost 2000 homes destroyed, I think rural mostly. If you have ever read through a construction contract, you may recall the term, "Act of God". This a picture of one of them. Nothing much mortal man can do about this kind of event.
In California, fires of this magnitude are relatively common. I got surrounded by one of them many years ago while working an outdoor project. The Borate (dunno if they still use that stuff or not...red liquid) bombers zooming overhead, dropping their red loads down on the flames. It was quite a show. In those days, they used leftover WWII B-17s, now I think they use jets that are able to skim water from a lake as they fly over. Don't think any of them were available for this Texas fire.
It's a scary spectacle up close. Bob Dillard can be found through a Google search commenting on some similar large fires that swept through his area out in west Texas last Spring (IIRC)...seems to have made a believer of him...kind of like staring into the belly of the beast.
God, Save Us