If you’ve ever wondered what hell is like, here’s a pretty good jumping-off point: This truly insane video taken from a car driving (accidentally) through a wildfire.
Over the holidays, arcing power lines outside of L.A. sparked a brush fire that, fed by winds over 50 miles per hour, eventually seared 1,200 acres, including a section of the scenic Pacific Coast Highway.
One Dutch family found themselves uncomfortably close to the blaze along that harrowing stretch, as embers and burning branches struck their car. Luckily, no one was hurt. Also lucky: They had the presence of mind to capture it on (edifying, horrifying) video.
While we can blame powerlines and strong winds for this off-season fire, we know that climate change will induce conditions — like increased drought and higher temperatures — that make wildfires more frequent, and more likely to cross paths with us.
Coupled with strained federal budgets and insufficient fire prevention measures, that makes the future look bright indeed — not in a good way, but in more of the fire-and-brimstone way. For more, read our special report on the intersection between wildfires, climate change, and us.
Having watched this video, there’s one thing I can say for sure about that intersection: It better not be a literal one, because I do NOT want to drive through that mess.