Wildfire News

JULIAN GETS NEW PARAMEDIC SERVICE FROM COUNTY AND CAL FIRE

 

Source: County News Service

January 7, 2016 (Julian) -- Julian residents and visitors now have around-the-clock access to paramedic engine service, thanks to an agreement reached among the region’s lead rural fire agencies and Julian fire officials.

 

MAJOR ROAD CLOSURES AND HAZARDS DUE TO SNOW, FLOODING, AND DEBRIS

January 7, 2016 (San Diego's East County) -- Snow, debris flows and flloding from heavy rainfall are making the morning commute tough. Here are the latest updates on closures and hazards impacting Highway 94, Interstate 8 and other highways as well as major surface streeets across East County.

  • Snow on I-8 just east of Kitchen Creek – snow ploughs are working (CHP)  Numerous accidents reported east of Pine Valley.
  • SR-94 closed both directions from Lyons Valley Rd. to Honey Springs due to flooding (Caltrans); CHP site indicates a “river” flowing 30-40 feet wide this a.m.
  • Sunrise Highway is open but you are required to carry chains. CHP is en route to check conditions on Highway 79 from I-8 to Julian.
  • Dehesa road from the school to willow glen has multiple mudslides and is a total mess.    Willow glen is completely closed by the quarry, a reader reports
  • State Route 94 at Buckman Springs Rd., vehicle overturned (CHP)
  • I-8 east west of Fuerte, off-ramp sign fell down and is in slow lane, per CHP
  • Ramona: B St. closed from 10th and at 11th due to flooding (DPW).  Also Magnolia dip is now closed at highway 78 and 500 feet north of Magnolia dip due to flooding in Ramona.
  • Spring Valley: Quarry Road from SR125 to Lakeview is closed due to flooding(DPW)

APARTMENTS UNDERWATER IN CITY HEIGHTS; DOG DIES IN FLOOD

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 5, 2016 (City Heights) – Floodwaters from tonight’s deluge have left four apartments underwater, also submerging vehicles at 48th and El Cajon Blvd. in City Heights.

Resident Jonathan Goetz says that “at least six feet of water”  have inundated downstairs units. “Dude, my car is underwater!” he posted on his Facebook page. 

His photos document the drama in real life as a woman rescues her dog, Cha-Cha, cradling her pet in her arms. Another man searched frantically for his missing chihuahua  Nacho, hip-high in the swiftly rising floodwaters. Goetz reports that Nacho was found dead in a bedroom.

FLOODING IN EAST COUNTY: AVOID THESE ROADWAYS

 

East County News Service

January 5, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) 6:15 p.m.– A flood watch has been upgraded to a flood warning, meaning flooding is occurring in our region. Here are updates on roadways reported flooded within the past hour in El Cajon, La Mesa, Crest,  and San Diego.  If you know of other hazards spots please post in our comments section.

Here are flodoed conditions reported in the last hour or so:

FLASH FLOOD WATCH: THUNDERSTORMS TO BRING HEAVY RAIN, POSSIBLE FLOODING

 

East County News Service

January 5, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) – The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood watch for San Diego County’s mountains, valleys and coastal areas in effect now through late Wednesday night. Mud slides and debris flows are possible in recently burned areas and on steep or unstable terrain. Urban flooding, minor flooding of small streams and low water crossings may also occur.

A series of Pacific storms will bring  thunder, lighting, heavy rain and possible hail through Wednesday night, with additional light to moderate rainfall continuing Thursday and Friday.

HIGH WINDS, RAIN AND SNOW TO AFFECT HOLIDAY TRAVEL

 

East County News Service

December 24, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) – The National Weather Service has issued a high wind warning in effect from Christmas Eve through Christmas morning in San Diego’s mountain and desert regions.  Winds of 35-40 miles per hour with gusts up to 80 mph are forecast. 

A cold front is also moving across the region, bringing rain and snow down as low as 3,000 feet.

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF'S CORNER: HOLIDAY SAFETY FROM THE INSIDE OUT!

 
By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

 

December 2, 2015 (San Diego's East County) - If you haven’t already, many of you have been thinking about pulling out those holiday decorations. ‘Tis the season’ but let’s exercise good common sense to ensure our holidays don't end up tragically reminds Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna.

AMBULANCE SERVICE ON AGENDA AT RAMONA MEETING DEC. 8

 

East County News Service

November 30, 2015 (Ramona) – On Tuesday, December 8th, the Ramona Municipal Water District will consider options to fund ambulance services. Those options include keeping the same paramedic transport services and replacing three ambulances (requiring a public vote to raise a fire fee), or outsourcing service to  private company.  The 2 p.m. meeting will be held in the Ramona Community Center,434 Aqua Lane.

STRONG WINDS, SHOWERS SUNDAY AND MONDAY

 

East County News Service

November 14, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) –Strong winds across our region are forecast for Sunday afternoon through Monday, with gusts over 70 miles per hour possible on mountain crests and desert mountain slopes and gusts of 35 to 60 mph in mountain and desert areas. 

Gale force wind gusts of 35 to 40 knots are also forecast over coastal waters, says Stephen Harrison, meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

Showers are also forecast, with rainfall light in most areas, though mountains could receive a half inch of precipitation.

CLIMATE CHANGE TO RAISE WILDFIRE RISK SIX-FOLD, STUDY PREDICTS

 

East County News Service

Photo: Lake Morena fire, by Claudia Millerbragg

November 9, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) – A new study published in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society  predicts that the number of extreme fire risk days in California will rise from 10 a year to 60 by the year 2100—a six-fold increase.  The study was conducted by  the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Utah State University scientists.

The scientists found that climate change is already underway and responsible for extreme fire conditions starting in the 1990s, which go beyond normal fluctuations in climate conditions. But there are things that can be done. Besides reducing greenhouse emissions to potentially slow or reverse climate change, investing in more brush clearing and firefighting capacity is critical.

EAST COUNTY EMERGENCY UPDATES: 2 HELPFUL RESOURCES ON FACEBOOK

 

November 9,2015 (San Diego's East County)--East County Magazine founded and operates the East County Alert Service, which provides wildfire and other emergency alerts free via e-mail and Twitter.  You can sign up for our alerts  here:  http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/wild-fire-alerts .  Major alerts are posted also on East County Magazine’s Facebook Page.

We’ve recently learned about additional sources of information during local emergencies and other incidents of interest. The East County Emergency Updates page on Facebook (no relation to East County Alerts) is run by Santee resident Tina Nunez as a resource for East County and surrounding areas to help protect safety and well being of those in our communities and our neighbors.  Her site can be a helpful adjunct to our own alerts during developing situations in our region. In addition, the Brush Fire Partyline on Facebook includes timely posts on emergencies in our region.

FIREFIGHTERS ASK YOU TO "FILL THE BOOT" NOV. 9-13 TO FIGHT MUSCULAR DYSTROPHY

 

 

Source: CAL FIRE

November 9, 2015 (San Diego)--Members of CAL FIRE Firefighters, along with the Muscular Dystrophy Association, will celebrate their 61-year partnership and kick off the fire fighters' annual Fill the Boot fundraising campaign to benefit children and adults affected by muscle disease throughout the San Diego area.

More than 300 members of CAL FIRE will fan out across San Diego County with boots in hand for this year’s drive during the week of November 9 through 13th at intersections throughout the San Diego region.

CROWD TURNS OUT FOR CEDAR FIRE LIVING MEMORIAL AND HISTORIC MONUMENT DEDICATION IN LAKESIDE

 

Story and photos by Leon Thompson

October 24, 2015 (Lakeside) - - An overflow crowd was on hand to witness the dedication ceremony for the newly completed Cedar Fire Historic Monument on Saturday October 14th at the Lakeside Fire District headquarters.  The monument includes a pocket park and honors first responders, those lost in the fire, as well as the strength and resilience of the survivors.

COUNTY DEPLOYS MUTUAL AID EMERGENCY WORKERS TO FIRES

 

County News Service

Photo: Fire devastation in Lake County.

October 21, 2015 (San Diego)--When fierce wildfires devastated parts of Northern California and the state of Washington in recent months, five San Diego County employees deployed to assist with emergency operations in a couple of the hardest hit areas.

BLEACH SPILL SICKENS STUDENTS, TEACHERS IN SANTEE

 

October 20, 2015 (Santee)-- Santee Fire Department and County HAZMAT are responding to reports of a bleach-like smell around Rio Seco Elementary School in the 9500 block of Cuyamaca Street, the Sheriff's office indicates.

The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that 81 students and teachers who reported feeling sick have been taken to local hospitals as a precaution. 

COUNTY, CAL FIRE LAUNCH PARAMEDIC SERVICE IN JACUMBA

 

 

East County News Service

Photo: Two Jacumba CAL FIRE firefighters stand ready to respond in a new paramedic engine at the Jacumba fire station.

October 14, 2015 (San Diego)--San Diego County Fire and CAL FIRE are making a major upgrade to fire and emergency medical services at the County’s Jacumba fire station with the launch this week of round-the-clock paramedic service. It’s the first time ever the service has been offered from the station, located south of Interstate 8 near the Mexican border.

The upgrade is part of an overall effort to increase paramedic capabilities throughout the San Diego County Fire Authority’s service area.  A new paramedic engine at Jacumba is the seventh that County Fire has added over the past few years.  Other new, County Fire-funded paramedic engines now operate out of the Otay, Jamul, Lake Morena, Pine Valley, Descanso and Intermountain stations.

HEAT ADVISORY ISSUED

East County Alerts

October 11, 2015 (San Diego)--The National Weather Service in San Diego has issued a heat advisory for San Diego County inland coastal and western valley areas from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday (today).

Temperatures are expected to range from 90 to 95 degrees for inland coastal areas and 95 to 99 in western valley areas.

The County issued an alert at 10:45 a.m. today. The County continues to operate the Cool Zones program and has designated buildings as cooling centers.

INSURANCE COMMISSIONER DAVE JONES TOURS BURNED AREAS, OFFERS TIPS TO PREPARE FOR WILDFIRES AND HOW TO HELP SURVIVORS

 

East County News Service

October 8, 2015 (Sacramento) – California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones visited communities hit hard by the Valley Fire, also noting that two lives were lost in the Butte Fire.

CEDAR FIRE HISTORIC MONUMENT DEDICATION OCT. 24 IN LAKESIDE

 

East County News Service

October 8, 2015 (Lakeside)—A dedication ceremony for the newly completed Cedar Fire Historic Monument will be held on October 24 from 10 to 11 a.m. at the Lakeside Fire Protection Office and Fire Station 2, 12216 Lakeside Avenue in Lakeside.

The monument includes a pocket park and honors first responders , those lost in the fire, as well as the strength and resilience of survivors.  Other elements are a map of the Cedar Fire, fire resistant plants and a symbolic red flag pole.  The monument has been designed as a place to inspire people to reflect, reconnect, and remember Lakeside’s struggle and rebirth after the Cedar Fire.

GOVERNOR VETOES BILLS TO CRIMINALIZE DRONES NEAR FIREFIGHTING PLANES

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 5, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) –Governor Jerry Brown has vetoed bills that sought to ban private citizens from flying drones over wildfires, schools and prisons, also imposing criminal penalties for violators.

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF'S CORNER: WHAT TO DO IF YOU'RE IN THE SMOKE PATH OF A WILDFIRE?

 

October 4, 2015 (San Diego's East County) - It’s pretty inevitable living in California, even if your home is not in the path of a fire, you can still be affected by smoke particles released into the air from wildfires reminds Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna.

HEARTLAND FIRE HOSTS OPEN HOUSES IN LA MESA AND LEMON GROVE

 

Source: Heartland Fire & Rescue

October 3, 2015 (San Diego's East County) - Heartland Fire & Rescue will be hosting two Fire Prevention Open House events in October. The events will be held on Saturday, October 3, 2015 in Lemon Grove and Saturday, October 10, 2015 in La Mesa. Due to construction there will not be an event held in El Cajon this year. Residents and visitors are invited to attend one or both of the two Heartland Fire events. Please see below for more details.

ATTEMPTED KIDNAPPING IN SPRING VALLEY

 

 

East County News Service

October 4, 2015 (Spring Valley ) – Two men in a white sedan attempted to kidnap a woman who was walking on the sidewalk near the 900 block of Gillespie Drive in Spring Valley on October 3rd at 5:15 p.m. 

One suspect is described as a black man 20-25 years old with a shaved head, about 5 feet 8 inches tall and 150 pounds. The second suspect is a male of unknown race.  The vehicle, a white sedan, may possibly be a Chevrolet Impala and had black windows.

NEW ONLINE TOOL CHARTS WILDFIRE RISK IN YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD

Source: County News Service

October 1, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) --As San Diego County enters the perilous fall wildfire season, you can now tap into a new online map to learn the level of fire risk in your immediate area and resources for finding help in an emergency.

The digital tool allows San Diegans to search the county by address or place name to learn the degree of wildfire hazard and how to better prepare for an emergency.

 Many of the county’s biggest blazes have struck in the fall, fed by Santa Ana winds and tinderbox conditions in the backcountry.

SDG&E WANTS RATEPAYERS TO PAY 90% OF ITS REMAINING WILDFIRE LAWSUITS COSTS

 

East County News Service

September 29, 2015 (San Diego)—San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) on Friday asked the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to allow the company to charge ratepayers for 90% of its remaining costs to settle the 2,500 lawsuits from the 2007 firestorms.  SDG&E faced $4 billion in claims arising from the fires, but settle most cases for $2.4 billion.

Most of that was covered by the company’s liability insurance or recoveries from third parties. SDG&E now wants its shareholders to pay just 10% ($42 million) with the remaining 90% to be passed on to ratepayers.  If approved, SDG&E proposes to spread out the remaining $379 million over six years, which it estimates would raise monthly bills less than $1.70 for a typical residential customer using 500 kilowatt-hours of electricity per month.

By contrast, a poll of East County Californian newspaper readers found that 100% believe  SDG&E and its shareholders, not ratepayers, should bear responsibility for the wildfire settlement costs.

RESIDENTS ASKED TO PROPERLY DISPOSE OF BARBECUE COALS TO PREVENT TRASH TRUCK FIRES

 

East County News Service

September 26, 2015 (San Diego)--September is Truck and Heavy Equipment Fire Prevention Month at Waste Management and Waste Management of Southern California is extending its prevention efforts by reminding residents to properly dispose of barbecue coals to help prevent heat related cart and collection truck fires.

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