Fires in California

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by scmom, Oct 21, 2007.

  1. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Oct 21, 2007

    It is crazy here in Southern California. Strong winds and bone dry conditions. Fires spreading totally out of control. My husband just called me to say he was safe but his vehicle got scorched (our truck!)! It stalled and he had to abandon it and run! @$%^& men! He's a volunteer! *&&^%%$$$# men! Some of the families at my school have been evacuated. Not again... we lost hundreds of homes a few years ago.

    Thanks for letting me vent.
     
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  3. desari

    desari Rookie

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    Oct 21, 2007

    My husband and I just saw the news online. We live in Oc and can smell them from here. You are in my prayers. I am glad to hear that you and yours are ok.
     
  4. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    scmom, I am glad that your husband is fine! You are in my prayers.
     
  5. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Oct 21, 2007

    Oh, no: it's just like 2003 in San Diego County - the Harris fire is burning the territory that didn't burn then, east of San Diego, and there's a fire in Pine Valley to boot, not to mention the 78 fire. Does Not Look Good.
     
  6. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Sounds like we are near each other. My kids go to Steele Canyon which is now an evacuation center.
     
  7. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    I noticed that.
     
  8. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Just got the call - no school for me tomorrow.
     
  9. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Very Not Good. Where do you teach?
     
  10. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Oct 22, 2007

    It's just after 2 am, and it's very ugly in San Diego County. The city of Ramona (40,000 people) is being evacuated - on two fairly narrow roads; houses have been lost. There is fire at the Wild Animal Park. The two big fires (Witch and Harris) had burned almost 40,000 acres as of about 10 pm. Three new fires have started in the last 30 to 45 minutes; one of them is on the west side of Interstate 15, which means not only that it threatens Cal State San Marcos directly but also that there isn't much to slow it down in the city of San Diego. Power lines are down throughout the county and are responsible for starting at least some of these fires; the winds aren't bad where I am but apparently are terrible elsewhere in the county. In addition, there are fires in Orange, Riverside, Los Angeles, Ventura, and Santa Barbara Counties, at least.
     
  11. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Oct 22, 2007

    Got a knock on my door early this morning - my sister has been evacuated from Rancho Bernardo. Tens of thousands of people are now out of their homes.

    There are more deaths than reported - found out this morning a coach I worked with this summer died in the fire and his 16 year old son is in the burn unit.

    It is getting very scary. My husband got 3 hours sleep - not sure what they are doing today. He said they are all spread so thin and the problem is the 911 system is doing a great job notifying people to evacuate but then they start calling for help too soon which pulls them off the fire.
     
  12. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Oct 22, 2007

    Worked all day creating a day care/play area at the school to give parents a break. They may have to evacuate the school soon. Over 250,000 (not a typo!) have been evacuated and they are clearing out more areas. 60 mph winds driving the fires. They are bringing in the national guard. They told us they can't even really fight the fires for the next 3 days because of the winds and to expect to be out of their houses (if they exist) up to 10-14 days.
     
  13. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Oct 22, 2007

    The winds are horrible here in south Orange County. One of my trees was uprooted. It looks foggy, but its soot and smoke. We are getting smoke from north San Diego county also. My in-laws (89 and 91) are close to the Foothill Ranch fire. I called the city, but they said we don't need to evacuate them yet. I'm thinking of getting them anyway. They are too old to go to an evac center at a high school. We've never had winds and fires like this. Its scarey!!!
     
  14. bcblue

    bcblue Comrade

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    Oct 22, 2007

    wow. Scary. sympathy and prayers from this east coast teacher.
     
  15. desari

    desari Rookie

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    Oct 22, 2007

    Dzenna. How are your in laws? A dear friend who lives in the townhomes that butt up to the hills of the fire had to evacuate today. I used to live there and am very glad I do not. R u doing ok? It is very nasty outside.
     
  16. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Oct 22, 2007

    My in-laws are fine. I freaked out when I came home from work and saw voluntary evacuations for the city of Lake Forest. The evacuations were for Foothill Ranch. The city of Lake Forest oversees Foothill Ranch. My in-laws are off of Lake Forest and Trabuco, near the cemetaries. There's lots of development betweem them and the burn area in Foothill Ranch.

    We are safe. My hubby opened with windows for the pets this morning and we came home to a house full of ashes and soot. You are right. It is so ugly out there. People are walking around here with masks!! The streets are quiet. I feel like a prisoner in my home. We kept the kids in today. A lot of the schools are closed tomorrow due to air quality. Ours is still open.

    I don't remember the winds ever being so bad with during the fires.
    Its a little scarey. 30,000 evacuated in San Diego county. Scripps Ranch and Rancho Bernardo are pretty developed. Scripps Ranch is just recovering from the last fire. I heard the fires may burn to Solana Beach!!!

    Where are you?
     
  17. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Oct 22, 2007

    300,000 evacuated. All schools in the county closed tomorrow.

    My sister's answering machine is still working so her house must still be there! Houses have burned all around her but all is well for her so far. Someone on the t.v. said "wherever God sneezes is where the fire will go next."
     
  18. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Oct 23, 2007

    SC- Where is your sister now? I remember how relieved I was when I called my friend in Scripps Ranch and got her answer machine during the last fire. I knew her house was still there. The wind is so freaky. One minute it is dead, the next minute it is raging. It seems so random when one house burns and the two other houses on both sides are still standing. Usually the media plays up any little fire as "Fire Watch". This is serious. Our prayers are with you and your family. Keep us updated.
     
  19. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Oct 23, 2007

    Over 500 houses have been lost in San Diego County; most of the county from SR 56 north and inland of I-5 is under mandatory evacuation. Qualcomm Stadium has been pressed into service as an evacuation center. Flames are visible in many parts of the county.
     
  20. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Oct 23, 2007

    The Santa Ana winds, with humidity down to 9%, aren't predicted to die down till Tuesday afternoon at the earliest. And the southern skyline looks like a technical rehearsal for The Damnation of Faust from the southernmost of the big fires.
     
  21. DizneeTeachR

    DizneeTeachR Virtuoso

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    Oct 23, 2007

    TG they said on our news at one point the humidity was down to 2 %!!! Unbelievable. I read they were moving animals from the San Diego Zoo. I was wondering what do you do with those types of animals? I hope you all STAY SAFE... WE are praying for you here in MI!!!
     
  22. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    I don't know about the Zoo - if fire gets there, it pretty much has to have taken out most of the city first - but the Wild Animal Park was threatened (and probably encircled) yesterday. Sensitive species such as California condors were captured and are being housed in the park hospital, which is fire-resistant. Other species are being left to their own devices - for one thing, it takes a good deal of planning to relocate giraffes and rhinos and elephants; for another, those animals' areas run up to 60 acres, which gives them certain amount of room to get away; for a third, those animals are extremely efficient at reducing brush - so all in all, they're probably safer remaining at the park than they are being relocated.

    Thank you so much for your prayers. Predictions yesterday had been that the high winds would persist as late as Wednesday afternoon, but now I'm hearing that the winds may be reduced as early as 3 pm today (Tuesday).

    All public schools are closed, except for some extended-day programs. Most if not all colleges and universities are closed too.

    The Witch fire has burned an estimated 145,000 acres, including 100 homes. The Harris fire, which is the one I'm watching, is above 200,000 acres. 30,000 households were without power overnight.

    And I believe the PBS radio station's transmitter, on top of the mountain that's been burning all night, just got knocked off the air.
     
  23. DizneeTeachR

    DizneeTeachR Virtuoso

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    Oct 23, 2007

    Boy... I wish I could send you our weather... we got a nice rain last nite. It's very damp & cool here this morning!!!

    I know this summer we had really bad drought conditions, but not as bad as you guys with the winds!!!
     
  24. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Well PBS is still on here. It pains me to think of so many people losing so much and animals being left to the fire's will (though in the wild, I'm sre they do it too). Normally we would have had a really dry summer as well and probably have the same conditions, but for some reason, no fire has ever broke out like the ones in Cali. This summer we were very fortunate to have as much rain as we did. I wish we could send some of the rain to you guys as well. Keep safe!!
     
  25. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Now there's a new fire up near Mount Palomar, in the north of the county.

    At this point it would need to be a very, VERY gentle rain - anything more forceful, given the low absorbency of the local adobe soils, will result in really nasty ash-and-mud flooding.
     
  26. Beth561

    Beth561 Comrade

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    Oct 23, 2007

    Once again, we can only sit back in horror as we watch another catastrophe shatter the lives of so many people. I believe that the resiliency of our children and the steadfast dedication and courage of the parents and community leaders will help to pull everyone through this difficult time. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you in California. Please let me know where I can send a donation to help- I prefer to help out with a direct cause rather than the red cross etc.
    Thanks and stay safe.
    Beth
     
  27. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Thank you, Beth.

    The San Diego County branch of the Red Cross is in fact doing yeoman service and would be a very good choice for donations. I suppose, though, that you could donate to the emergency services of the city of San Diego.
     
  28. desari

    desari Rookie

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    Currently in Laguna Hills. I used to live on Portola and Paloma. You are right. i too can't remember it being this bad. And to thinks some jerk started this mess in our area. The things I would do to this person if i knew who it was!!!!

    We have had no windows open. Just the ac going. I am sure your sinuses are as messed up as mine.
    My child is dying to play outside. she is going stir crazy. I don't think i will feel safe for her to be out there till maybe this weekend.

    just think the next problem we all face her is so cal is mud slides. :unsure:
     
  29. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Not 30,000 evacuated: try 300,000, and counting - a fairly densely populated residential area south and east of me is now under mandatory evacuation.
     
  30. Erin Elizabeth

    Erin Elizabeth Groupie

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    Oct 23, 2007

    My thoughts are with all of my So Cal neighbors. :hugs: I've been keeping up with the fires through the newspaper. We have one up here that started just after school got out today, but it's tiny compared to what you have down there. Stay safe!
     
  31. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Oct 23, 2007

    TeacherGroupie- I ment to type 300,000 not 30,000. I missed an "0". Both numbers are shocking to me. It is also shocking that densely populated areas are evacuating. It shakes my false sense of security. Are you packed? My thoughts and prayers are with you.

    Desari- The air was better here today but it smelled smokey. I kept the Pre-K in again. We discussed the fires. Many were scared and one family packed clothes last night. I wonder if we'll even have rain this year for mud slides.

    Usually the media blows everything out of proportion. "Rain Watch", "Fire Watch", ect. This is real.
     
  32. AlliBob

    AlliBob Rookie

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    This is horrible. The weather is supposed to get a lot better later this week. We need some moisture. The air quality is awful. My students haven't been able to play outside in two days. It looks scary outside! This is the worst fire season I have ever experienced. All I can say is keep praying. :unsure:
     
  33. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Got stuck at Steele Canyon (evacuation site and our school) for several hours when they closed the road, but got out an hour ago so I didn't have to spend the night. The fire has crested the mountain and is coming toward the evacuation center! They decided to leave everyone there, put them in the gym and defend. Glad I got out but feel guilty!

    Blew bubbles, did playdough, easels etc. Kids are very flexible but tired of sleeping in their cars. I would say more people are sleeping in their cars and motor homes than the gym. The mall down the road is packed with probably thousands of refugees. News now says 513,000 people evacuated.

    One little boy who has been there since Sat. asked me if we were still going to have Halloween. I said, "Sure, honey - we can have Halloween anywhere." He asked me to bring pumpkins tomorrow. Heck yes - if they let me in!

    They have closed all schools in the county until Monday at the earliest.
     
  34. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Oct 23, 2007

    God Bless you for easing their fears and caring for them.
     
  35. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    My son took off for San Diego this afternoon His New wife is in the NAVY and has been evacuated to the Navy Hospital (she is a Corpsman) he is hoping that I-8 does not close. I am a little mad at him that 2 years ago I told him to get renters insurance but he didn't (if he had insurance the wife could just grab the cat, computer, clothes and get the heck out of Dodge.)

    I worry about him, I understand it is crazy there. But better than the hurricane in Louisiana
     
  36. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Renters' insurance is so cheap, but we, as parents, know nothing!!!
     
  37. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    The local PBS outlet doesn't blow things out of proportion. It's reporting things are hideous. Yes, I'm packed.

    If I sounded sharp, I apologize.

    It's been announced that San Diego schools are closed for the week.
     
  38. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    The situation is hideous and you didn't sound sharp!
     
  39. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    Cheep! I only pay $15 a month on renters insurance for a house
     
  40. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    I-8 has been closed since yesterday. It may be open tomorrow depending on the winds but there are fires in Alpine which is the way in by I-8. I-15 and 94 also closed. As far as I know, the only way in is I-5 and back roads.

    As for renter's insurance, it is a great idea but you can't get it in all areas. Our renters were turned down because the company said the house had too many doors and windows!

    I used to enjoy the smell of a campfire. After today I am not so sure! Watching the flames march down the hill was scary!
     
  41. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    I have been looking on the internet and listening to KOGO on the internet and no one has said I-8 was closed Darn he is about at Golden Acorn
     

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