Wildfire News

COUNTY FIRE REACHES NEW HEIGHTS WITH MT. LAGUNA FIRE STATION

By Chuck Westerheide, County of San Diego Communications Office

Photo:  fire crews and residents gather to celebrate the opening of Mt. Laguna Fire Station 49

May 6, 2022 (Mt. Laguna) - County Fire, CAL FIRE and the community of Mt. Laguna on Wednesday celebrated the completion of the County’s highest elevation fire station, sitting at about 6,000 feet.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

MAN ARRESTED FOR ARSON FIRES

East County News Service

May 2, 2022 (Vista) - A man has been arrested on suspicion of setting several fires in the North County, says Sergeant Anthony Portillo with the Sheriff’s bomb arson unit.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

SHERIFF SEEKS LEADS ON SUSPICIOUS FIRES IN NORTH COUNTY

Man seen setting multiple fires in Vista.

Source:  San Diego County Sheriff

May 1, 2022 (Vista) - The Sheriff's Bomb/Arson Unit is investigating a series of suspicious fires in the North County. 

On April 28 just before 4:00 p.m., deputies from the Vista Sheriff's Station responded to a report of a brush fire near the intersection of La Tortuga Drive and Hacienda Drive in the City of Vista. 


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

COUNTY BOLSTERING AERIAL FIRE RESOURCES

By Yvette Urrea Moe, County of San Diego Communications Office

Photo:  this is a sketch of the twin-engine Bell 412 EPX helicopter which the County will be purchasing for the Sheriff's Department fleet.

April 27, 2022 (San Diego) - The County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to strengthen aerial fire protection in the region by approving the purchase of a new twin-engine firefighting helicopter and adding two additional firefighting helicopters to a firefighting response agreement with San Diego Gas & Electric.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: WHOSE FAULT IS IT? APRIL IS EARTHQUAKE PREPAREDNESS MONTH

Whose fault is it? We all own a bit of it!

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

April 9, 2022 (San Diego) -- Let’s Rock! The month of April is declared “Earthquake Preparedness Month” by the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services according to Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna. We are “way” over-due for an earthquake. Now is the time to prepare, not afterwards says Chief DiGiovanna!


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

LOCAL MEDIA'S ACCESS TO BREAKING NEWS THREATENED BY ENCRYPTED POLICE RADIOS

By J.W. August, Times of San Diego, a member of the San Diego Online News Association

Photo by Robert Gehr

April 3, 2022 (San Diego) - For editors and reporters, access to the police scanner is a critical — and immediate — news source when covering breaking news, be it a massive fire raging through a community or rescue workers trying find a child swept away in a creek.

That access is being threatened in California now that dozens of law enforcement agencies, including the San Diego Sheriff’s Department, have made the decision to fully encrypt their communications, based on a directive from the agency whose statewide computer network provides criminal histories, driver records and other public safety information.

Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

FIRE WEATHER AND HEAT WAVE HIT REGION

East County News Service

April 6, 2022 (San Diego) - High temperatures are forecast through Friday, combined with Santa Ana winds and low humidity for elevated fire weather. Inland areas are forecast to hit triple digits, reaching up to 102 degrees in the desert and in the high 90s in inland valleys, even near the coast Mountains will be slightly cooler in the low 80s.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

COUNTY ASKS PUBLIC TO TAKE SURVEY ON EMERGENCY SERVICES

Source: San Diego County Office of Emergency Services

April 4, 2022 (San Diego) - The San Diego County Office of Emergency Services is asking County residents to provide feedback for two emergency plans.

 

The goal is to further protect residents, their property, and the environment. The survey feedback will be incorporated into the Operational Area Emergency Operations Plan and the Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

LATE-NIGHT FIRE BEHIND SANTEE WALMART POINTS UP IMPORTANCE OF NIGHT-FLYING HELICOPTERS, WHICH COUNTY WILL SOON ACQUIRE

Supervisor Fletcher pledged in his State of the County speech Tuesday to finally acquire a night-flying helicopter for San Diego County

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Screenshot off Malik Earnest’s Twitter post

 

March 31, 2022 (Santee) – A brush fire reported shortly before midnight behind the Santee Walmart at 170 Town Center Parkway took over three hours to fully extinguish.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

SMALL FIRE DOUSED NEAR LA MESA TROLLEY STOP

East County News Service

Image: CC via Bing

Update April 2, 2022: A suspect, 31, has been arrested on suspicion of arson in this case, as well as throwing a rock at the trolley.

March 31, 2022 (La Mesa) – A brush fire scorched less than an acre yesterday afternoon before being doused by Heartland Fire & Rescue crews.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

AUDIT: CALIFORNIA UTILITIES AREN’T DOING ENOUGH TO REDUCE WILDFIRE THREATS

By Julie Cart, CalMatters

CalMatters is a public interest journalism venture committed to explaining how California’s state Capitol works and why it matters

Photo:  Camp Fire via U.S. Forest Service

March 27, 2022 (San Diego) - As record-breaking drought fuels another potentially dangerous wildfire season, the state auditor reported today that state officials are failing to hold California’s electric utilities accountable for preventing fires caused by their equipment.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

JUDGE BLOCKS FANITA RANCH, CITING FIRE DANGER

By Miriam Raftery and Mike Allen

March 10, 2022 (San Diego) – Citing wildfire evacuation concerns, San Diego Superior Court Judge Katherine Bacal has ruled that the city of Santee and the City Council violated state law in approving Fanita Ranch, HomeFed’s long-planned 3,000 home development.  The project would be built on more than 2,600 acres of fire-prone hillsides in the city’s northwest section.

The ruling found that the city’s environmental review of the project was inadequate, violating California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) by failing to adequately disclose how the development would affect wildfire evacuations and safety in the surrounding community.

The Judge also slammed the city for its last-minute removal of the Magnolia Avenue extension from the project just six days before approving the project’s EIR, even though that extension had been touted as a key wildfire evacuation route. This was inadequate for public review or evaluation of impacts on neighbors along other connector roads should an evacuation be needed. In addition, the judge found, “the City’s decision not to recirculate the EIR violated CEQA.”


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

CAL FIRE SAN DIEGO SENDS AIR RESOURCES TO BATTLE #JIMFIRE EAST OF IRVINE

By Jonathan Goetz

Last update: 7:07 p.m.

March 2, 2022 (Cleveland National Forest) - CAL-Fire San Diego has sent air resources to a remote area east of Irvine, in Orange County with smoke also visible in Riverside County in Southern California. The fire began at 11:20 a.m. in the Holy Jim trail area, per Cleveland National Forest, which is coordinating the firefighting response.

The Fire Integrated Real-time Intelligence System (FIRIS) reported that as of 4:24 p.m. the #JimFire had reached 551 acres. It can be difficult to map and fight fires in such mountainous terrain.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

GET READY FOR THE UNEXPECTED WITH A DISASTER “GO BAG”

Don’t think you need an emergency kit? Think again, say families who needed one.

By Juan Castro

February 23, 2022 (San Diego) -- Flashlights, a first aid kit and water bottles cover the dining room table. The Sánchez family is not going camping — they are preparing for disaster by putting together a “go bag.”


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

TRAUMA TEAM RECRUITING NEW VOLUNTEERS: NEXT TRAINING SESSION MARCH 2 IN LA MESA

East County News Service

February 22, 2022 (San Diego's East County) -- When trauma hits it does not discriminate. It can come in a blink of an eye and can turn your life around like a tornado in a matter of seconds.   Most do not know the steps to move forward from a crisis event, but there are people with hearts two sizes too big who volunteer to be by the side of victims.

In collaboration with the emergency response system, Trauma Intervention Programs of San Diego (TIP) provides immediate crisis intervention following a tragedy. TIP volunteers add another dimension to the emergency system compassionate support. Specially trained volunteers provide care and support to citizens who have been traumatized or are in a state of crisis providing service 365 days a year.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

COMMENT DEADLINE ON ALPINE COMMUNITY PLAN EXTENDED TO MARCH 5; RESIDENTS FEAR FIRE DANGER

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: 2020 Valley Fire in Alpine by Ryan Grothe

February 11, 2022 (Alpine) – The deadline for public comments has been extended to March 5 for the Alpine Community Plan Update and a proposed General Plan Amendment that would allow increased density on formerly protected lands in close proximity to Cleveland National Forest lands. A Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Report (SEIR) has been prepared to analyze and disclose the environmental impacts of the project.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

LEGISLATION AIMS TO PROVIDE ALL CALIFORNIANS WITH QUALITY HOMEOWNERS’ INSURANCE AND GRANTS TO FIRE HARDENING

East County News Service

Photo: CC by SA

February 6, 2022 (Sacramento) -- As homeowners across California continue to find their property insurance policies cancelled or struggle to find affordable, comprehensive property insurance, Assemblymember Marc Levine (D – Marin County) today announced legislation that will require mandatory issuance of homeowners’ insurance and establish a grant program to harden residential properties in areas prone to wildfires.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

CRASH SHUTS DOWN HIGHWAY 78

 

January 31, 2022 -- A septic truck has overturned on Highway 78 at Yaqui Wells.

The injury accident has shut down the highway in both directions this morning.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

SDG&E AND CLEVELAND NATIONAL FOREST ANNOUNCE COMPLETION OF MAJOR FIRE-HARDENING PROJECT

With project’s completion, 30% of electric infrastructure in San Diego’s backcountry has been fire-hardened
 
East County News Service
 
Photo by Miriam Raftery:  new power poles in Pine Valley
 
January 24, 2022 (San Diego’s East County) -- San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) and the Cleveland National Forest announced today the completion of the Cleveland National Forest Fire Hardening and Safety (CNF) Project, a cornerstone of the San Diego region’s community fire safety and electric system-hardening efforts.

Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

FIRE IN LAKESIDE CLOSES WILDCAT CANYON ROAD

By Miriam Raftery

Photo by Jacqueline Heil

January 24, 2022 (Lakeside) -- The #CanyonFire that began with a vehicle fire at Wildcat Canyon and Muth Valley roads in Lakeside has forced closure of Wildcat Canyon Road in both directions from Willow to Barona. As of 3:30 p.m., Cal Fire spokesman Frank LaCoco told ECM he anticipates closure for at least two more hours due to equipment on both sides of the road, with firefighters remaining on scene into the evening.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

HEAD-ON COLLISION BLOCKS DEHESA ROAD

 

Update January 11, 2021:  CHP indicates a Honda Civic crossed the double yellow lines, colliding with a Chrysler Pacific minivan.  A 74-year old San Diego woman, a passenger in the minivan, died at the scene.  The minivan’s driver, a 46-year old woman, suffered moderate injuries.  The Honda driver, a 30-year-old woman, suffered major injuries; she is suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol but has not yet been charged, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.

Update 4 p.m.  Dehesa Road will likely be obstructed for two hours, ECM has learned. 

By Miriam Raftery

January 9, 2021 (El Cajon) -- A head -on collision is blocking Dehesa Road in unincorporated El Cajon in both directions, about 500 feet west of Sloan Canyon Road. 

Two patients has been transported to Sharp Memorial hospital. 

Edwin Mathery, an eyewitness who lives nearby, told ECM that one of the vehicles is a white minivan.  


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

CAL FIRE: POWER LINES HIT BY TREE CAUSED DESTRUCTIVE DIXIE FIRE

East County News Service

Photo: CC by NC-ND via Bing

January 6, 2022 (Butte County) – Cal Fire investigators have determined that the Dixie Fire, which burned nearly a million acres and destroyed 1,329 structures in northern California, was caused by a tree contacting electrical distribution lines owned by Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E). The blaze was the second largest in the state’s history and also caused at least one death.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

FATALITY CRASH ON I-8 CAUSES LONG TRAFFIC DELAYS IN ALPINE

East County Wildfire & Emergency Alerts

January 4, 2022 (Alpine) – The driver of a blue Peterbuilt truck towing a double-axle flatbed Fontaine trailer was killed in an accident this afternoon on I-8 east of Dunbar Lane in Alpine.  All but one lane remains closed and a SIG Alert has been issued due to traffic delays of an hour or more.

According to Officer Travis Garrow with the California Highway Patrol, the as yet unidentified man applied the brakes and a load of steel sheet pile beams shifted forward, penetrating the back of the truck and impaling the driver.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

DEERHORN VALLEY RESIDENTS FIGHT FIRE WHILE WAITING ON FIREFIGHTERS

By Miriam Raftery

December 9, 2021 (Deerhorn Valley) – Residents of rural Deerhorn Valley south of Jamul battled a fire Tuesday, December 7 that began near Deerhorn Valley Road and Elena.  Residents have voiced concerned about fire response time and how the fire started.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

AUTHORITIES IDENTITY WOMAN WHO DIED IN RAMONA FIRE

East County News Service

Photo via Cal Fire Twitter feed

November 27, 2021 (Ramona) – The medical examiner has identified the woman found dead after a fire at her home as Deborah Ann Hester, 61.

Based on preliminary law enforcement investigation, on the early morning hours of November 15th, Hester called 9-1-1 and requested emergency assistance due to a fire at her residence. San Diego County Sheriff’s Deputies arrived at the decedent’s residence at 566 Telford Lane in Ramona and heard her screaming for help.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

BRUSH FIRE IN SANTEE SPARKS EVACUATIONS; HOMES THREATENED

East County Wildfire & Emergency Alerts

November 25, 2021 (San Diego’s East County) – The #Magnolia Fire in Santee at Walker Preserve , 9500 N. Magnolia AVe., has burned 10 acres and has prompted evacuation notices, according to ECM reporter Rebecca Jefferis-Wiliamson.

The fire is spreading at a moderate rate, fueled by windy weather.

An evacuation warning has been issued to homes around Hill Creek School near Ramsgate Drive & Hillcreek Road. The Sheriff reports a temporary evacuation point is at Pathways Church (9638 Carlton Hills Blvd.)


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

POWER OUTAGES BEGIN: THOUSANDS WITHOUT ELECTRICITY ON THANKSGIVING

 

By Miriam Raftery

November 25, 2021 (San Diego’s East County) – SDG&E has shut off power to 5,311 customers as of 10 a.m. Thanksgiving morning.  Another 47,934 are at risk of outages amid a red flag warning for extreme fire danger and high winds. 

So far, these are the communities without power:  Alpine, Boulevard, Descanso, Jamul, Pala, Pauma Valley, and Potrero as well as the Campo, Cuyapaipe, La Jolla, Pauma, and Viejas reservations.Many more areas are on a list of potential outages to come.

View an outage map and click on your community for estimated power restoration times:  https://www.sdge.com/residential/customer-service/outage-center/outage-map   Some areas are listed as likely to be without power until Saturday.

SDG&E has opened several community resource centers where residents can get water, ice, snacks, and preparedness supplies, car power inverters, solar-powered batteries, radios, and update on outages.  View map at https://www.sdge.com/resource-centers.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

RED FLAG WARNING: EXTREME FIRE RISK TONIGHT AND TOMORROW; SDG&E EXPANDS LIST OF POTENTIAL POWER OUTAGE AREAS

East County Wildfire & Emergency Alerts

November 24, 2021 (San Diego’s East County) -- The National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning from tonight at 9 pm to Friday at 6 pm. due to risk of extreme fire behavior, threatening life and property.

Be prepared to evacuate if needed. Strongest winds are expected tonight into tomorrow morning with gusts up to 65 mph.

SDG&E has broadened its list of possible power shut-offs to include over 53,000 customers across most of East County and other areas. For the latest list of impacted areas see https://www.sdge.com/psps-dashboard.  As of 6 p.m. tonight, the list includes:


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

SDG&E WARNS OF POWER SHUTOFFS OVER THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY DUE TO FIRE DANGER: OUTAGES COULD LAST DAYS

Update November 24, 2021:  SDG&E has widened its list of possible outage areas to include more than 53,000 customers. See the updated list of impacted communities here:  https://www.sdge.com/psps-dashboard

By Miriam Raftery

November 22, 2021 (San Diego’s East County) -- Before you stock up on turkey and other groceries for a feast, be aware that San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) is asking customers in 38 local communities to prepare for potential Public Safety Power Shutoffs (PSPS) over the Thanksgiving holiday.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

SANTA ANA WINDS BRING FIRE DANGER

By Miriam Raftery

November 20, 2021 (San Diego’s East County) – Santa Ana winds are forecast starting tonight, with gusts up to 60 miles per hour in canyons and mountain passes.  With warm temperatures and humidity dropping as low as 7 percent, fire danger will be high on Sunday and Monday.

Despite a chance of showers Tuesday, a new round of Santa Ana winds is predicted late Wednesday and Thursday, Thanksgiving Day, according to the National Weather Service.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.

Pages