Posted by: hmillic | October 22, 2007

State of Emergency in San Diego: Wildfires engulf city, radio stations go black, workers stay home

SAN DIEGO (AP) – Wildfires fanned by fierce desert winds forced the evacuations of nearly 250,000 people Monday in San Diego County, including hundreds who were being moved by school bus and ambulance from a hospital and nursing homes.

More than a dozen wildfires had engulfed Southern California, killing at least one person, injuring dozens more and threatening scores of structures.

The fires have burned about 100,000 acres in San Diego County, said county Supervisor Ron Roberts. “This is a major emergency,” he said.

“We have more houses burning than we have people and engine companies to fight them,” San Diego Fire Captain Lisa Blake said. “A lot of people are going to lose their homes today.”

About a dozen blazes erupted over the weekend, feeding on drought- parched land from the high desert to the Pacific Ocean. One person was killed and several injured in a fire near the Mexican border, and dozens of structures have burned across the region.

Things got worse Monday, when new fires sprouted and others merged. Some of the worst damage was in Malibu, where a church, homes and a historic castle were destroyed.

All San Diego Police Department officers and off duty detectives were ordered to return to work to help with evacuations.

In many cases, crews couldn’t begin to fight the fires because they were too busy rescuing residents who refused to leave, fire officials said.

“They didn’t evacuate at all, or delayed until it was too late,” said Bill Metcalf, chief of the North County Fire Protection District. “And those folks who are making those decisions are actually stripping fire resources.”

One blaze devoured more than 5,000 acres in northern San Diego County and forced the evacuation of the community of Ramona, which has a population of about 36,000. Several structures were burned on the edge of town and sheriff’s deputies called residents to alert them the fire was approaching the city, San Diego sheriff’s Lt. Phil Brust said.

“The winds are up, it’s very, very dangerous conditions,” San Diego County spokeswoman Lesley Kirk said. “Fires are popping up all over the place.”


Responses

  1. I lived in Ramona 22 yrs. ago, when it was a small town and children rode their horses down Main St.. My oldest son was born at Pomerado Hospital in Poway. I’m so sorry to see all this vanished. My heart goes out to all in that area. My memories will always be there. I pray 1313 Rowley is still there, as my memories will be.

  2. That’s the 2003 fire, right? I have that image up on the wall, I recognize it.

    It’s from http://interwork.sdsu.edu/fire/images/1.SanDiegoOnFirecopy_001.jpg

    Has anyone taken a comparable picture of the 2007 fires yet?

  3. Yeah, I’m going to post an updated picture soon I just thought it was a good visual

  4. I stumbled upon your blog while searching photos of the 2007 SoCal wild fires. This is such a compelling photo, no?

    Just wanted to say I took a brief look around and think you’ve got a great thing happening here…you are adorable, great attitude, interesting friends, very nice.

    Yes, I AM entertained!

    Good wishes…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: