Clearly the fires are out of control as they rapidly spread through 11 states, from as far north as Canada to the borders of Mexico.
The flames are fuelled by hot dry winds, which initially blew the toxic pollution out over the Pacific Ocean, but last week they changed direction and the polluted air has reached Northern Europe, 5,000 miles away.
Here in the south of England we should be on the alert and certainly not complacent. The conditions are not that dissimilar to those in the USA. The ground is hard as nails and the vegetation once again bone dry. Even standing grass holds little moisture, and the countryside is being fanned by hot drying winds. The very conditions which have ignited and spread the devastating wild fires on the other side of the Atlantic.
We are promised rain later this week but not for certain. Let us hope so, but we should be on our guard and hope everyone is alert and sensible. We must take precautions not to start fires which scar the countryside and are a danger to lives, livelihoods and wildlife.
Arable farmers are in a quandary - to drill or not to drill! About this time last year the rain began and never stopped until March. Few crops had been drilled and what had been barely survived the extremely wet winter.
Currently the ground is tinder dry. If we drill and it remains relatively dry throughout the winter months, as is forecast, the crops will fail or at least be poor. If we hold back waiting for some rain to help create a warm, damp seed bed, and the opposite occurs - it starts and does not stop - we will find ourselves once again with little or no winter crops in the ground! Oh the joys and tribulations of being a farmer?
Over many years when I have been chairman of a number charities and organisations I learnt several lessons. One being, when top of those pyramids with a reliable team around me ensuring I was always fully briefed, I knew almost everything that was going on within and around that organisation, including matters concerning finance, sponsors, staff, volunteers, friends and foe.
This enabled me and my team to make informed, calculated and hopefully wise decisions in the best interest of those groups at the time. Also, ensuring they remained both financially and physically stable for future years and generations.
The other equally important lesson I learnt was that from the very day I no longer held that position, with no daily briefings or communications, and no supporting team, I had neither the authority nor information to voice my opinion on matters relating to that organisation.
In a nutshell, I no longer had the up-to-date intelligence to give informed advice or opinions. Unless one is in the ‘engine room’ 24/7, acquiring that vital and valuable knowledge, ones view is of little value.
Once someone has been Major General they should never slip back into the ranks. Some do and are considered worth listening to, but it is 99.9% certain they are not.
It is depressing watching as past prime ministers and ministers, niche scientists and medics, and Uncle Tom Cobbly and all, line up to give their judgements. Arrogantly they think they know better than the PM, who is uniquely briefed whilst at the top of the national pyramid.
Boris has all the facts on Corvid 19, and on how not to allow the EU to drive a coach and horses through the Withdrawal Agreement, signed in ‘good faith’, on the basis a Trade Deal would be fully implemented.