December 8, 2017 11:39 am
Updated: December 8, 2017 12:12 pm

California wildfires: This is what they look like from the International Space Station

A A

The relentless California wildfires that have forced nearly 200,000 people from their homes and torched thousands of hectares in their wake, are so massive the smoke from the infernos is visible from space.

As nearly 6,000 firefighters battle six major blazes in Southern California, astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS) captured the smoke plumes from the wildfires, showing the dramatic impact the fires have caused.

WATCH: Frantic man stops on highway, rescues wild rabbit from flames

U.S. astronaut Randy Bresnik shared striking images on social media after the ISS crew was asked if they could see the fires from space.

READ MORE: These images show just how intense the devastating California fires really are

“I was asked this evening if we can see the SoCal fires from space. Yes Faith, unfortunately we can. May the Santa Ana’s die down soon,” the astronaut tweeted Wednesday.

Story continues below

Santa Ana winds have long contributed to some of the region’s most disastrous wildfires. Winds from high pressure systems blow down toward the Pacific Ocean, speeding up, drying out as they squeeze through mountain passes and canyons. In Northern California, the same wind effect is known as Diablo winds.

The largest of the blazes, dubbed the Thomas Fire, remains only 10 per cent contained as of Friday morning and has burned through over 53,000 hectares, destroying over 400 structures.

READ MORE: Fresh California wildfires engulf San Diego area

“Thank you to all the first responders, firefighters, and citizens willing to help fight these California wildfires,” Bresnik tweeted.

Here’s a look at the California wildfires as seen from the ISS.

California wildfires as captured by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik on the ISS.

NASA/ Randy Bresnik

California wildfires as captured by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik on the ISS.

NASA/ Randy Bresnik

California wildfires as captured by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik on the ISS.

NASA/ Randy Bresnik

California wildfires as captured by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik on the ISS.

NASA/ Randy Bresnik

California wildfires as captured by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik on the ISS.

NASA/ Randy Bresnik

California wildfires as captured by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik on the ISS.

NASA/ Randy Bresnik

California wildfires as captured by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik on the ISS.

NASA/ Randy Bresnik

California wildfires as captured by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik on the ISS.

NASA/ Randy Bresnik

California wildfires as captured by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik on the ISS.

NASA/ Randy Bresnik

California wildfires as captured by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik on the ISS.

NASA/ Randy Bresnik

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Report an error

Comments

Want to discuss? Please read our Commenting Policy first.