Aboard Marine One, U.S. President George W. Bush is touring fire-raged areas soon after arriving in California on Thursday.
Bush arrived at Miramar Marine Corps Air Station in San Diego County about 9:30 a.m. local time and was greeted by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger as he stepped off Air Force One.
Earlier, as he left Washington, Bush acknowledged the difficult days ahead.
"It's a sad situation," he said. "People have got a lot of anguish in their hearts, and they just need to know a lot of folks care about them."
More than 15 wildfires have been raging across Southern California in the past five days, having killed at least eight people, injured dozens of others, destroyed more than one thousand homes and charred more than 1,000 square kilometers of land.
The firefighters, aided by the calming Santa Ana winds and dropping temperatures, looked to gain control of some of the most severe fires.
Bush, with planned visits to burned neighborhoods and briefings with fire officials, is expected to highlight the availability of federal relief funds as a result of the president designating the firestorms a major disaster.
"There will be help for the people of California," Bush said.