Home International California fires added to Google Maps

California fires added to Google Maps

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Dozens of fires continue to burn in California Thursday as thousands of structures are threatened and many people remain under evacuation orders.

The LNU Lightning Complex Fire, which includes Napa, Sonoma and Lake Counties in California, has burned more than 124,000 acres and is 0% contained.

As fires blaze across California, local and federal officials see hope in providing more real-time information.

Google announced Thursday it is updating Maps and Search to detail information about the size, boundaries, and locations of fires in the U.S.

“We have seen a severe uptick in wildfires,” Google’s Ruha Devanesan said.

On Wednesday alone, more than 90 fires were burning in California and officials ordered the evacuation of tens of thousands of people. Twenty-six fires were bad enough to require state help.

“We’re all on edge,” said Abby Browning, chief of the office of private-sector partnerships in the California Office of Emergency Services.

“We don’t know what’s going to happen, and the best thing we can ask for is information.”

Google’s new features come as the company increasingly aims to centralize information on its own properties rather than directing users to third-party web sites.

As one of the world’s largest data collectors, Google is positioned to have the fullest view of geographical conditions.

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