Extremes of fire and ice ravaged homes on different ends of North America recently.
In the north, a wall of ice 9 meters (30 feet) high plowed through Ochre Beach in Manitoba, Canada on May 10. No one was injured, but the ice destroyed 12 homes and damaged another 15, reported Sky News. Strong winds pushed the frigid bulldozer of ice from Dauphin Lake onto the lakefront properties.
“The whole thing happened in about 10 minutes,” Clayton Watts, deputy reeve of the rural municipality of Ochre River, told the Winnipeg Free Press. “We had people barbecuing on their decks. They turned around to go inside to get something, they came back out and their decks were ripping apart.”
“There is a concern that, you know, we’re just not going to have this community here now…” Watts told Global News. “It’s a big hit out of their budget and their retirement plans. … Some just don’t know how they’re going to survive.”
Similarly, another wall of ice crept towards homes and a resort on the shores of Lake Mille Lacs in Minnesota on Saturday, reported WCCO, a local CBS station. Damages from this second wind-driven mini-glacier were less extreme than in Canada.
In the south, wildfires struck early in California this year. Six hundred-eighty wildfires have roared though the state so far this year, 200 more than average, reported Fox News. By the middle of last week, firefighters had gained control of a blaze that incinerated 44 square miles of forest in the Santa Monica Mountains. That fire damaged 15 homes.
Another fire burned 11 square miles of wilderness in Tehama County in northern California last week. Earlier in the month, a fire in the Camarillo Springs area threatened Malibu but was brought under control before it destroyed a single home, according to the Huffington Post.
IMAGE: Video grab via BBC