The Tallest Tree In The World Is Threatened By Fire: Firefighters Wrap It In Fireproof Blankets.

It is not an easy time for General Sherman. In fact, this giant tree of the United States has probably never been more endangered than in September 2021. The terrible fires raging in California that threaten to destroy entire natural areas of inestimable importance are dangerously close. of this tree, considered the largest in the world.

This impressive redwood tree stands in the giant forest of Sequoia National Park and, standing 83.8 meters tall and over 2,300 years old, it is a monument, a symbol that cannot be damaged by fire. That’s why firefighters’ efforts to protect it include a whole host of measures to prevent the fire from reaching it. And when we say “in any way” we also think of the possibility of wrapping the redwood in a fire retardant blanket, as we do for people and structures in danger.


image credit: Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks/Facebook

Desperate situations call for all kinds of efforts to avoid the worst. California rangers and firefighters are well aware of this and are working to ensure that General Sherman can continue to be a local and global icon of nature.

The terrible fires, started by lightning, spread with astonishing speed to various regions and quickly reached not only the giant forest of Sequoia National Park but also King’s Canyon National Park. The rate at which fires spread is extremely high, and despite efforts to fight them, it seems they never stop.


image credit: Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks/Facebook

The local authorities therefore immediately thought of the precious trees of the national park where General Sherman is also located. This wonderful redwood is considered the largest living organism by volume, with 1,487 cubic meters and an estimated weight of around 1,900 tons.

In a desperate attempt to save the towering redwood, forest rangers decided to cover its base with a flame-retardant aluminum blanket, the type used in emergency situations and specially designed to withstand the heat of the fire. Given the size of the tree, several leaves were used for this purpose, wrapped around it to form an envelope that would protect it.


image credit: Samartur/Wikimedia

So, as one would with a person in distress, General Sherman is at the center of extreme rescue efforts. “The fire continues to grow in all directions, authorities in the region have said, and teams are preparing the forest by removing fuels and applying shrouds to some of the most iconic trees.”

In the past, according to law enforcement officials, these “blankets” have served to protect both vegetation and man-made structures. We can only hope that will be the case and that General Sherman will continue to rule the forest for a long, long time.



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