Top 6 Disastrous Wildfires in History

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2004 Alaska Fire Season (US) – 6.6 million acres

The fire that occurred in Alaska back in 2004 was the worst one in the entire history of the US state of Alaska, especially considering the area burned. Over 6.6 million acres of land were completely devastated by 701 fires.

More than 215 of these were caused by lightning strikes, and the other 426 were caused by humans. The summer of 2004 was so warm and wet at the same time, compared to the typical interior of the summer climate in Alaska, that were recorded enormous amounts of lightning strikes.

After a couple of months of this kind of lighting and hotter temperatures, an oddly dry August resulted in disastrous fires that kept on going until September.

1939 Black Friday Bushfire (Australia) – 5 million acres

This has gone down in the history of mankind as Black Friday, as the bushfires totally ruined over 5 million acres in Victoria, a state in southeastern Australia.

It happed in 1939, after several years of drought, which was followed by even higher temperatures and strong winds. The fires occupied over three-quarters of the state’s area, resulting in 71 casualties.

This makes it the third most deadly bushfire ever in Australia’s history. Even if it kept on going for several days, on 13 January, when the temperatures went up to 44.7 C in Melbourne, the fires escalated, even more, killing 36 people and destroying over 700 homes. Ashes from the blazes reached all the way to New Zeeland.

2010 Bolivia Forest Fires (South America) – 3.7 million acres

Back in August 2010, over 25,000 fires burned all over Bolivia, covering more than 3.7 million acres, and damaging the country’s section of the Amazon.

All that thick smoke that came from the fires forced the government to cancel all the flights and declare a state of emergency. Some of the causes that led to these fires were pointing towards the farmers that started fires to clear the land and the extreme ongoing drought that the country has been through in the summer months.

The Bolivia forest fires were by far the worst fires the South American nation ever experienced in almost 30 years.

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