Welcome to 5 Things to Know, which may or may not become a recurring daily post on this here website. Who knows! For now, this replaces the daily coronavirus updates that have been running on this site since March. Since the pandemic affects all of us, that will remain a big part of these updates – but, as it also, sadly, becomes part of our regular daily lives, this format allows us to share information on some other things going on in and around the Coachella Valley that you may want to be aware of as the situation becomes our new normal.
As always, thank you for your continued support of Cactus Hugs.
1) The Fires
Dozens of fires continue to burn in California, Oregon, and Washington. Just a few years ago, this type of destruction seemed almost unimaginable…but here we are:
More than 3.1 million acres have burned in California and 12 people have died as a result of the wildfires ravaging the state, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection https://t.co/u8mZlUrTms pic.twitter.com/cPLJjBKWJ8
— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) September 10, 2020
The 2020 fire season has been record-breaking, in not only the total amount of acres burned at just over 3 million, but also 6 of the top 20 largest wildfires in California history have occurred this year. pic.twitter.com/CmmhH5wTVX
— CAL FIRE (@CAL_FIRE) September 10, 2020
At over 471,000 acres, the August Complex Fire is now the biggest fire in California's history.
If it were a city, it would be the 3rd biggest in the US.
BTW, 4/4 of the biggest fires in CA history have occurred since 2018. 3 are burning right now.
— Susie (@susieneilson) September 10, 2020
Some important links:
- The LA Times is tracking each of the major fires on this online map.
- The El Dorado Fire has now burned over 12,610 acres as firefighters take on the blaze for the sixth day.
- “I’ve been flying for 25 years,” he said, removing a cloth mask to speak. “We get occasionally shot at overseas during missions. It’s definitely by far the toughest flying that I’ve ever done,” – The New York Times spoke to National Guard helicopter pilots who have been flying rescue missions in the Sierra National Forest.
2) The Coronavirus
Riverside County officials are urging more residents to get tested to both slow the spread of coronavirus and reach a case rate that would allow for the reopening of more business sectors. The press release from the county states:
The county is currently designated for the purple tier, where the COVID-19 virus is considered widespread. Based on the state’s criteria, increased testing will result in a lower case rate, allowing the move to the red tier where the virus spread is considered substantial. Counties are placed within tiers because of their daily case rate (must be lower than seven new cases per 100,000 population) and positivity rate (lower than eight percent).
Riverside County announced 133 new coronavirus cases and 9 more people dead of coronavirus in the last 24 hours. Here’s the latest in the Coachella Valley:
UPDATE: County officials believe the decline in testing is in part because more people are getting commercially-available antigen tests, which are not counted in the totals, instead of PCR tests offered by the state and county. https://t.co/owJ0rZvPz5
— Kevin Duncliffe (@kevinduncliffe) September 10, 2020
Some important COVID-19 reads:
- A CDC study suggests those who have dined out at a restaurant were twice as likely to have tested positive for coronavirus.
- Don’t expect to get any additional financial relief from Washington DC anytime soon a pared-down COVID-19 relief package was rejected in the Senate on Thursday.
- More local casinos are updating their mask policies, with neck gaiters, masks with valves, and bandanas no longer allowed.
3) 23-Year-Old Arrested for Fire at Republican Headquarters
A Palm Desert man was arrested and charged with arson, attempted arson and property destruction after a federal investigation linked him to a fire started at the East Valley Republican Women Federated headquarters in La Quinta in May.
Carlos Espriu was taken into custody on Wednesday. Investigators said they found social media posts believed to be from the suspect in which he stated just days before the fire, “I wanna go burn shit n get hit with tear gas.”
4) The Ironman Race Has Been Cancelled for 2020
The Ironman race that has been a mess of an event held in La Quinta and Indian Wells over the last two years will not take place in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. The event had been scheduled for December 6. The city of La Quinta did announce that the event is set to return in 2021.
5) The ANA Inspiration Golf Tournament is Underway
It’s sort of a surreal sports day as the first game of the NFL season will be televised (even with a few fans in the stands in Kansas City) and a major golf tournament is taking place without fans in Rancho Mirage.
— ANA Inspiration (@ANAinspiration) September 10, 2020
While you can’t watch the event in person, you can watch it on the Golf Channel (schedule here). Mission Hills also set up a special section for residents to watch as the tournament is essentially taking place in a bubble:
Mission Hills Country Club (@MissionHillsCC1), home of the @ANAinspiration, hosting a watch party for members on the 55th Patio, so members can still enjoy the tournament while staying out of the players’ “bubble.” Full story tonight on @KESQ pic.twitter.com/toV1hTH9Rd
— Taylor Begley (@TaylorKESQ) September 10, 2020
As Cactus Hugs continues to evolve and find its way during the pandemic, I just wanted to say thank you for your continued support. It means a ton.
Stay safe. Stay Smart. Wear a mask. 💚🌵