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Thursday, May 31, 2012

Focus on Fire Safety: Grilling and Campfires


Focus on Fire Safety: Grilling and Campfires

photo of a mother grilling while her child plays outside the safety zone
Every year Americans look forward to summer vacations, camping, family reunions, picnics, and the Fourth of July. Summertime, however, also brings fires and injuries due to outdoor cooking and recreational fires. Annually, there are almost 3,800 Americans injured by gas or charcoal grill fires. (Source: CPSC)
Summertime should be a time of fun and making happy memories. Knowing a few fire safety tips and following safety instructions will help everyone have a safe summer.

Safety Tips for Grilling and Campfires

  • Position the grill well away from siding, deck railing, and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets from the grill area: declare a three-foot "safe zone" around the grill.
  • If you own a propane grill, check the cylinder hose for leaks before using it for the first time each year. A light soap and water solution applied to the hose will reveal escaping propane quickly by releasing bubbles.
  • Avoid using soft wood, such as pine or cedar that will likely pop and throw sparks, in a fire pit. Use of seasoned hardwood is suggested.
  • Don’t build a campfire at a site in hazardous, dry conditions or if the campground, area, or event rules prohibit campfires.

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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

2012 CALIFORNIA MOBILIZATION GUIDE / IMT OP GUIDELINES


 2012 CALIFORNIA MOBILIZATION GUIDE

california map with agencies listed

NOTE: The California Mobilization Guide is in .pdf format
Download free Acrobat Reader here


Standard Firefighting Orders

  1. Keep informed on fire weather conditions and forecasts.
  2. Know what your fire is doing at all times.
  3. Base all actions on current and expected behavior of the fire.
  4. Identify escape routes and safety zones and make them known.
  5. Post lookouts when there is possible danger.
  6. Be alert. Keep calm. Think clearly. Act decisively.
  7. Maintain prompt communications with your forces, your supervisor, and adjoining forces.
  8. Give clear instructions and insure they are understood.
  9. Maintain control of your forces at all times.
  10. Fight fire aggressively, having provided for safety first.

18 Watchouts Situations

  1. Fire not scouted and sized up.
  2. In country not seen in daylight.
  3. Safety zones and escape routes not identified.
  4. Unfamiliar with weather and local factors influencing fire behavior.
  5. Uninformed on strategy, tactics, and hazards.
  6. Instructions and assignments not clear.
  7. No communication link with crewmembers/supervisors.
  8. Constructing line without safe anchor point.
  9. Building fireline downhill with fire below.
  10. Attempting frontal assault on fire.
  11. Unburned fuel between you and the fire.
  12. Cannot see main fire, not in contact with anyone who can.
  13. On a hillside where rolling material can ignite fuel below.
  14. Weather is getting hotter and drier.
  15. Wind increases and/or changes direction.
  16. Getting frequent spot fires across line.
  17. Terrain and fuels make escape to safety zones difficult.
  18. Taking a nap near the fire line.

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Saturday, May 26, 2012

Memorial Day Weekend Safety Tips


 The 2012 version of Memorial Day is upon us. For many, it represents the first days of Summer. With that, comes: first exposure (or maybe just over-exposure) to the sun, first cook-outs or BBQs on the grill (or over-exposure to the grill..yes, too much to eat) and the first time back into the refreshing waters of the ocean or pool.

You may spend the Holiday Weekend at home with your family or a small group. You may opt to travel by air, road or rail and spend it with the masses or perhaps with a huge group that just happens to resemble your family. However you choose to spend it, please take a look at a few safety tips that may ensure a long and very pleasant Memorial Day Weekend... despite those distant relatives that all decided to visit from the East Coast. (Of course we're kidding!)

These Memorial Day Weekend Safety Tips are provided with help from our friends at the County of Los Angeles Public Health and a few of our own, we thought were worth mentioning:
  • If you take to the mountains for somehiking or biking, don't go alone. Hike/bike during daylight hours. Hydrate and pack a snack. Don't underestimate the terrain. And if you have one, take a mobile phone with you and make sure it's charged.
  • If you choose to imbibe, don't drink and drive! We all know the sobering statistics. Appoint a designated driver, use a designated driver service (there are many) or call a cab.
Enjoy the weekend. Enjoy family and friends. Enjoy foods and libations (in moderation.) And enjoy the freedom and liberty that was made possible by those the men and women who served and do serve in theUnited States Armed Forces. Please take pause, if only for a moment, and give thanks to those who have had the courage to enlist, shown the strength and commitment to serve and to those who gave it all. This weekend especially, we remember!

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LAFD Mourns Passing of Active Duty Fire Inspector Jerald L. Coates


Public Memorial Service for
LAFD Inspector Jerald L. Coates

LAFD Inspector Jerald L. Coates 

Dear Friend of the LAFD,


It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing of a highly respected member of the Los Angele Fire Department.

Fire Inspector Jerald L. Coates left us suddenly on Sunday afternoon, May 20, 2012, while off-duty and in the comfort of his own home. He was an active-duty, 25-year veteran of the Department, having been appointed to the LAFD in 1987.

In his nearly three decades of service to the people of Los Angeles, the 59 year-old Coates held a variety of demanding assignments. In 2001, he was promoted to the Fire Prevention Bureau, where he specialized in "underground tanks." He then joined the Brush Clearance Unit in 2010.

As a member of this small team of 13 inspectors, Coates helped supervise brush clearance issues of nearly 180,000 parcels, citywide. He truly enjoyed educating the community about the dangers of wildfire and was routinely lauded by residents for his firm, but fair handling of difficult situations. And by all accounts, he took great pride in personalized public service.

We kindly ask you to keep Inspector Jerald L. Coates and his loved-ones in your thoughts and prayers. He is survived by his longtime girlfriend, Donailah and his 25 year-old son, Oryan.

The public is invited to join the LAFD and the family and friends of
Inspector Jerald L. Coates, as we together, will mourn his passing.

DATE: Friday, June 1, 2012
TIME: 10:00 am
LOCATION: Divine Saviour Catholic Church, 610 Cypress Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90065
INTERMENT: Private
VIEWING: Private
DONATIONS: IN LIEU OF FLOWERS, PLEASE SEND DONATIONS TO: Widows, Orphans and Disabled Firemen's Fund 815 Colorado Blvd, 4th Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90041

Official Source: http://lafd.blogspot.com/2012/05/lafd-mourns-passing-of-active-duty-fire.html
"Serving with Courage, Integrity and Pride"
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Friday, May 25, 2012

CA-MVU- Banner 5,321 acres and is 100%


Incident Name/Type: CA-MVU-Banner 

Updates:
2000 5-29:  CA-MVU-5400 Shelter Valley, Cal Fire IMT #9 (Zombro) Fire has burned 5,321 acres and is 95 % contained. No expected fire spread this operational period.
0800 5-26: 4,100 acres at 30% contained, Equipment mishap sparked the conflagration early Thursday afternoon in the Cigarette Hills area, near Banner Grade and southwest of Scissors Crossing, according to Cal Fire.
1330hrs 5-25: 3,100 acres. 20% contained. Residents at an RV park are being forced to evacuate due to a flare-up of the wildfire in an area east of Julian. Mandatory evacuations in a trailer park and closing S2 right now. Wind driven with uypslope gust's to 36 mph. http://hpwren.ucsd.edu/cameras/L/hpwren-iqeye4.jpg
1200hrs  5-25: CALFIRE - ICT #9 took command.
0800hrs  5-25 Fire is 2,500 acres at 20% contained
1740hrs 5-24  Cal Fire reporting 1200 acres. Now 40 engines and 8 crews
1630hrs 5-24 Fire is 1000-2000 acres with rapid ROS going up Granite Peak per Banner AA, IC just ordered 6 T3 ST's, 10 T1 Crews, 4 WT's, 6 additional Div Sups, 2 Branch Dirs. and County GIS
1530hrs 5-24: 150 acres S.O.reverse 911 for Mandatory Evacuations for Shelter Valley Evac Site is Borrego Springs HS.
CA-MVU- Banner 2,000 acres, 20%
Location: Fire is located off HWY. 78 west of Scissors crossing on Cigarette Hill, Fire is an area just north of last years 2000 acre Grade Fire.
Acres: 4+
ROS: Not Provided
ROC: Strike teams enroute for structure protection. Has some wind on it.Fire will run out into Anza-Borrego Desert and sparse fuels.
Structures threat: Yes
Special Hazards: 
Resources:
One ST from CNF (6631-C) & one Cal Fire MVU (9330-C) for Structure protection
Currently CNF has responding(some of the engines are part of the ST)
BC31, DIV3, E30, E32, E331, E334, E35, E36, E38, E39, WT3
Plus two tankers and 2 helicopters
Radio Frequencies:
Weather Info: Temp 67
Humidity 55 %
Wind Speed W 10 G 15 MPH
Maps: http://www.scribblemaps.com/maps/view/scissors
Twitter map from MVU at about 1930 https://twitter.com/CALFIRESANDIEGO/.../photo/1/large
Online Scanner: http://www.radioreference.com/apps/a...wp&feedId=9733
Web Cams: http://hpwren.ucsd.edu/cameras/L/sy-av8185-1_3.jpg
Mt. Laguna Cam: http://hpwren.ucsd.edu/cameras/L/hpwren-iqeye4.jpg
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Thursday, May 24, 2012

LA COUNTY FIRE EVALUATE LIFEGUARD DRONE

LA COUNTY FIRE LIFEGUARDS EVALUATE NEW
REMOTE-CONTROLLED MARINE VEHICLE NAMED “EMILY”

EMILY being tested a Zuma Beach
LOS ANGELES – May 24, 2012 – The Los Angeles County Fire Department Lifeguard Division has been working closely with Hydronalix Corporation in evaluating a remote-controlled marine vehicle that lifeguards may use to aid potential struggling swimmers who may be caught in rip currents or other ocean hazards. The initial test craft has been dubbed “EMILY” in memory of 13-year-old Emily Rose Shane, who was tragically killed by a car while walking along Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu in 2010. Hydronalix President Tony Mulligan, decided to name his project after Shane, who was a close friend of his daughter’s, and was known for always wanting to help others, which is what this project is all about.

Hydronalix wisely approached the world-renowned Los Angeles County Lifeguards for input on the potential to use this technology for lifesaving purposes. “EMILY will never replace ocean lifeguards,” Mulligan commented, “but it may be able to get to drowning victims quickly enough to buy time until trained lifeguards arrive.” EMILY will need to be controlled by a qualified lifeguard who is trained to recognize hazardous ocean conditions, such as rip currents, in which swimmers may be inadvertently caught. EMILY may also have a future application in assisting in locating missing swimmers, as well as finding downed aircraft or sunken vessels.

This project is in a limited, prototype phase that will require more research and development before being routinely seen on local beaches. However, Lifeguard Division Chief, Mike Frazer, noted that, “We owe it to the taxpayer to explore potential technology that could assist public safety and well being.”

STRONG RIP CURRENTS CONTINUE THROUGHOUT
LOS ANGELES COUNTY BEACHES


LOS ANGELES COUNTY LIFEGUARDS MADE 12,768 OCEAN RESCUES DURING THE LAST 12 MONTHS.

Your L.A. County Fire Lifeguards want you to safely enjoy the sun and beach this summer by following a few safety tips;

  • Always swim by an open lifeguard tower
  • Swim between the orange flags
  • Use a leash and fins when body-boarding
  • Keep young children close at hand
  • When in doubt about any aspect of your beach experience, ask a lifeguard for direction.


www.fire.lacounty.gov
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Dry Conditions Require Caution for Memorial Day Weekend


Significant Fire Increase Has CAL FIRE Officials Concerned


Sacramento – Memorial Day Weekend is often the kick-off for summer vacations and outdoor activities.

However, CAL FIRE is urging caution this holiday weekend due to the increasing fire danger throughout
California.

“Recent fire activity including a 7,000 acre fire just over the border in Nevada, really serves as a reminder,
that the conditions are ripe for wildfires,” said Chief Ken Pimlott, director of CAL FIRE. “CAL FIRE
crews have already responded to over twice as many fires this year compared to last year at the same time.”
 
The lack of rainfall across California has set the stage for an increased potential of major wildfires.
Coupled with this weekend’s increase in outdoor activities, firefighters will be on high alert. CAL FIRE is
asking Californians and visitors to the state to be extra vigilant while recreating in the outdoors.
CAL FIRE would like everyone to remember these important steps this holiday:
Camping:

  • Obtain necessary permits needed for campfires
  • Clear away grass, leaves and other debris within a 10-foot perimeter of any campfire
  • Have a responsible person in attendance at all times
  • Ensure all campfires are completely extinguished before leaving
  • When barbequing, never leave the grill unattended

Wildfires are not the only danger posed by the outdoors; drownings also dramatically increase during the
Memorial Day weekend. In California, drowning is the leading cause of death among children under 14,
and every year CAL FIRE responds to water rescues across the state, many of which tragically claim the
lives of both adults and children.

In the Water:

  • Always wear a life jacket!
  • Children should always be supervised by a responsible adult
  • Never swim alone
  • Drinking and swimming is just as dangerous and drinking and driving.

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CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER WARNING: IMPERIAL COUNTY AND EASTERN RIVERSIDE COUNTY.

CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER
 AREA: AFFECTED AREA IN CALIFORNIA IMPERIAL COUNTY AND EASTERN RIVERSIDE COUNTY.
 WINDS: SOUTHWEST 20 TO 30 MPH WITH GUSTS UP TO 45 MPH.
 TIMING: STRONG GUSTY WINDS WILL DEVELOP THROUGH THE MORNING WITH THE STRONGEST WINDS EXPECTED IN THE AFTERNOON.
 RELATIVE HUMIDITY: AS LOW AS 13 PERCENT.
 IMPACTS: FUELS ARE VERY DRY AND FIRE DANGER IS HIGH. THESE CONDITIONS COMBINED WITH LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY AND STRONG WINDS WILL LEAD TO WIDESPREAD HAZARDOUS FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS.
Instruction:
PLEASE ADVISE THE APPROPRIATE OFFICIALS AND FIRE CREWS IN THE FIELD OF THIS FIRE WEATHER WATCH.
Area: CALIFORNIA FIRE WEATHER ZONE 232IMPERIAL COUNTY AND EASTERN RIVERSIDE COUNTY-
Affected Counties or parts of: Riverside, Imperial
Sent: 2012-05-24T02:53:59-07:00
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CAL FIRE Dedicates New Creston Fire Station

CAL FIRE, the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors and Creston community members held a dedication ceremony at the new location in the 6000 block of Webster Road.

Starting June 1, the new Creston Fire Station will be staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week by full time CAL FIRE personnel, as well as volunteer firefighters.

Firefighters at the Creston station cover 135 square miles, but before the new station was built, personnel and offices were housed in two modular buildings. A detached metal building was used to store the fire engine.
Source:  ksby.com - Link
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Sunday, May 20, 2012

RED FLAG WARNING FOR GUSTY WIND AND LOW HUMIDITY MONO COUNTY

  RED FLAG WARNING
 Red Flag Warning in effect from 2 pm monday to 2 am pdt Tuesday for gusty wind and low humidity for Mono and Eastern alpine counties below 9000 feet

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN RENO HAS ISSUED A RED FLAG WARNING FOR GUSTY WIND AND LOW HUMIDITY WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM 2 PM MONDAY TO 2 AM PDT TUESDAY.

 THE FIRE WEATHER WATCH IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT.
 AFFECTED AREA: FIRE ZONE 273 MONO-EASTERN ALPINE COUNTIES BELOW 9000 FEET.
 WINDS: SOUTHWEST 15 TO 25 MPH WITH GUSTS TO 40 MPH BY LATE MONDAY AFTERNOON. WINDS WILL CONTINUE INTO THE EARLY MORNING HOURS TUESDAY BEFORE WEAKENING.
 HUMIDITY: FALLING TO 8 TO 15 PERCENT FOR THE AFTERNOON AND EARLY EVENING  BUT ONLY RISING TO NEAR 20 PERCENT BY AROUND MIDNIGHT.
 IMPACTS: THE COMBINATION OF GUSTY WINDS AND LOW HUMIDITY WILL CREATE CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS.

Instruction:
A RED FLAG WARNING MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS WILL OCCUR.CONTINUE TO CHECK WEATHER.GOV/RENO FOR UPDATES.

Area: MONO-EASTERN ALPINE COUNTIES-

Affected Counties or parts of: Modoc, Plumas, Placer, Mono, Lassen, El Dorado, Nevada, Sierra, Alpine
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Saturday, May 19, 2012

LACoFD: CA-TF2 USAR EVALUATED BY UN TEAM (INSARAG)


URBAN SEARCH AND RESCUE TEAM EVALUATED
FOR INTERNATIONAL DEPLOYMENT AS “HEAVY TEAM”


WHO: Los Angeles County Fire Department’s Urban Search and Rescue Team (CALIFORNIA TASK FORCE 2) known internationally as USA-2

An eight-member multinational evaluation team from the International Search and Rescue Advisory Group (INSARAG), operating under the United Nations umbrella and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

WHEN: Sunday May 20, 2012, 9:00am- 12:00pm

WHERE: Del Valle Regional Training Center – TB 4549 C-3
28101 Chiquito Canyon Road, Castaic, CA 91383-4640

WHAT: The Los Angeles County Fire Department Urban Search and Rescue Team will undergo an evaluation of its ability to mobilize, deploy, and operate in a manner consistent with the United Nations International Search and Rescue criteria.
 The evaluation will be conducted by a United Nations-appointed classification team who will score the operation based on standards adopted by the International Search and Rescue Advisory Group (INSARAG).
 These standards classify international rescue teams based on their capacity and capability to perform sustained rescue operations. The high standard that is maintained by the LACoFD/USAR team is referred to as a “Heavy Team” classification. LACoFD public information officers will be available to facilitate media tours from 9:00am-12:00pm.

CONTACT: Please direct all inquiries to the Public affairs office at 323-881-2411.
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CA-TCU: CAL FIRE Declares start of fire season

 The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE), Tuolumne-Calaveras Unit (TCU) announces the opening of the 2012 fire season within the state responsibility areas of Calaveras County, Tuolumne County, Eastern Stanislaus County and Eastern San Joaquin County.

The declaration of fire season allows TCU to start the process of opening and staffing fire stations on a 24-hour basis to help protect California’s wild lands. The Columbia Air Base is also open and staffed with a helicopter. Unit Chief Brian Kirk stated “Burn time hours will remain open so citizens can continue working on their defensible space.” Burn permits are required. Weather conditions will continue to be monitored on a daily basis and when it becomes necessary burn time hours will be restricted or burning will be suspended.

Each year there is a potential for devastating fires which could have been prevented. Is your home ready for wildfire? Visit us at www.readyforwildfire.org for tips on how to make your home safe this fire season.

 Chief Kirk encourages citizens to consider alternatives to burning by recycling, composting or chipping your defensible space debris. By protecting your home, you protect your neighbors’ home as well as the community we live in.
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Thursday, May 17, 2012

LACFD - 2012 Valor Awards on May 21


Los Angeles County Fire Department
 HONORS EXTRAORDINARY ACTIONS
  Los Angeles – May 16, 2012 – Almost 57 years after he was killed in an “explosion of fire” while trying to save fellow firefighters during the Hacienda Brush Fire in 1955, Los Angeles County Fire Captain Glenn Rockey will be posthumously awarded the Medal of Valor by Fire Chief Daryl L. Osby.  Rockey will be among 25 members of the Los Angeles County Fire Department and 16 citizen heroes honored at the 2012 Valor Awards on May 21, at 7 p.m., at the Pasadena Convention Center
As a special tribute, Randolph Mantooth and Kevin Tighe, best known to audiences as Los Angeles County Fire Department Paramedics Johnny Gage and Roy DeSoto in the beloved 1970s television show “Emergency!,” will attend the award ceremony as special guests.
 Highlights of this year’s awards program include the crew of West Hollywood Fire Station 7 for assisting the City of Los Angeles Fire Department during a house fire and bravely working to free veteran LAFD Firefighter Paramedic Glen Allen from entrapment inside the collapsed home, suffering major injuries in their attempts.  In other emergency incidents, ordinary citizens who stepped up in extraordinary moments of bravery to assist firefighters or perform rescues themselves are also being honored.  Many of these heroes are teenagers who took quick actions and rescued victims from the ocean, a backyard pool, a remote motorbike trail, and also during the highly publicized stabbing of a South East High School student last September.
The award categories, which include Unit Citation, Certificate of Valor, and the celebrated Medal of Valor, will be presented for 20 separate incidents.  According to Fire Chief Osby, “The Medal of Valor is the highest honor bestowed upon a member of Department.  It is given to those members who have exhibited courage above and beyond the call of duty, risking their own lives to save another under conditions that place them at extreme personal risk.  I am proud to announce that five members of our organization will go home with this prestigious award next Monday night.”
The Los Angeles County Fire Department is an international leader of the fire service and one of the largest emergency service agencies in the world, providing fire protection and life safety services to more than four million people living and working in the County’s 2,300-square-mile area, and around the globe whenever needed. Visit www.fire.lacounty.gov, or find them on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

 On September 2 1955, Los Angeles County Fire Captain Glenn E. Rockey was killed on this La Habra Heights hillside during the Hacienda Fire, which also took the young lives of five members of the Los Angeles County ProbationForestry Camp 5-1, and severely burned seven others.  Fire investigators mark the spots where some of the men were killed. (Los Angeles County Fire Department Historical Archives)

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Tuesday, May 15, 2012

YNP: Yosemite Park Prescribed burn tonight



Wawona Northwest Prescribed Fire
Scheduled for Tuesday Evening, May 15, 2012

Yosemite National Park fire managers are planning the 846 acre, Wawona Northwest Prescribed Fire, to begin on the evening of May 15, 2012.  An air quality variance has been requested for marginal air conditions for Tuesday’s ignition.  Improving air dispersion is predicted to begin Wednesday and continue through the end of the week, allowing good smoke dispersion.  Please Note – these are predictions only, and if stagnant air develops or persists over the Sierra Nevada region, fire managers will postpone the prescribed fire.   

An objective of the project is to conduct ecosystem restoration by applying fire to this fire adapted landscape. Prior to the exclusion of fire over 100 years ago, fire was a natural process that played an integral role in shaping the landscape of Yosemite each year.  Densities of shade tolerant tree species, such as white fir and incense cedar, and forest litter and duff have accumulated to unnatural and unaccepted levels in the absence of fire.  Through the application of fire, a more natural vegetation composition can be achieved that would likely support a surface fire, but less likely to support crown fire.  

Another important objective of the prescribed fire is for the direct protection to the community of Wawona from an unwanted wildfire.  This project will take advantage of the 2007 Jack Fire perimeter and reduce hazardous fuel loading in the Wawona Wildland Urban Interface area.  Burning this segment will form a barrier to the community of Wawona from the spread of unwanted wildfire approaching from Turner Ridge to the north and partially from the South Fork Merced River drainage to the northwest.   This project ties together multiple and historical research, natural and prescribed fires, and mechanical thinning.  

Community members and visitors have seen equipment and crews moving into the area as they prepare the fire perimeter for fire ignition and operations.  A test fire, blackline, will be conducted near the top of the ridge to determine if overall prescribed fire objectives can be met.  The blackline is critical to the success of the project by reducing the overall risk to firefighters for an escape along the steep, and difficult, eastern fire line.

Smoke will be present during the prescribed fire, particularly during the early morning hours.  Fire managers are working with Mariposa and Tuolumne Counties, San Joaquin Valley, and Great Basin Air Pollution Control Districts (APCDs), daily to time the project to coincide with favorable weather that will facilitate good air quality, and move and disperse smoke into the atmosphere away from the community.  A burn permit will be issued to the park by Mariposa County APCD, and air quality measuring devices are being moved to local communities.  It is suggested that community members that are sensitive to smoke close windows and doors and/or they may wish to leave the area during active ignition of the project.

This fire segment is identified in the 2004 Yosemite Fire Management Plan/Environmental Impact Statement and re included in the Multi-year Strategic Fuels Management Plan.  The goals and objectives for this project conform to the park’s General Management Plan and Vegetation Management Plan.

More updates will be published through the duration of the prescribed fire project.
For additional Information:

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Sunday, May 13, 2012

NWS: RED FLAG WARNING THUNDERSTORMS / DRY FUELS FIRE ZONE 284


 NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MEDFORD HAS ISSUED A RED FLAG WARNING FOR SCATTERED THUNDERSTORMS WITH DRY FUELS FOR FIRE ZONE 284 WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM 6 AM TO 11 PM PDT MONDAY.  SISKIYOU COUNTY FROM THE CASCADE MOUNTAINS EAST AND SOUTH TO MTSHASTA.


RED FLAG WARNING FOR DRY LIGHTNING
 THE FIRE WEATHER WATCH IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT. 


 AFFECTED AREA: FIRE WEATHER ZONES 284. FROM THE CASCADE MOUNTAINS EAST AND SOUTH TO MTSHASTA
 TIMING: ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS COULD BEGIN AS EARLY AS MONDAY MORNING. THUNDERSTORM COVERAGE IS EXPECTED TO INCREASE TO SCATTERED MONDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH MONDAY EVENING.
 RAINFALL POTENTIAL: THUNDERSTORMS WILL PRODUCE LITTLE OR NO RAINFALL INITIALLY. HOWEVER AROUND A TENTH OF AN INCH OF RAIN IS POSSIBLE UNDERNEATH THE CORES OF THUNDERSTORMS BY MONDAY EVENING. 
 IMPACTS: IN ADDITION TO LIGHTNING POSSIBLY STARTING FIRES IN DRIER LOCATIONS GUSTY AND ERRATIC WINDS ARE LIKELY NEAR THE STORMS.
 THIS WILL INCREASE THE POTENTIAL FOR FIRE SPREAD IF FIRE STARTS OCCUR. 

Instruction:
A RED FLAG WARNING MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS  ARE EITHER OCCURRING NOW OR WILL SHORTLY. THESE CONDITIONS WILL CREATE THE POTENTIAL FOR EXPLOSIVE FIRE GROWTH.

Area:  SISKIYOU COUNTY FROM THE CASCADE MOUNTAINS EAST AND SOUTH TO MTSHASTA

Affected Counties or parts of: Modoc, Siskiyou

Sent: 2012-05-13T14:52:11-07:00

California Fire News 2011 
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Red Flag Warning: Owens valley parts of Inyo, San Bernardino Counties

 THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN LAS VEGAS HAS ISSUED A RED FLAG WARNING FOR STRONG WINDS AND LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM NOON TO 8 PM PDT MONDAY.

A LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM MOVING ACROSS NORTHERN CALIFORNIA MONDAY WILL BRING GUSTY SOUTH WINDS TO THE OWENS VALLEY AND ESMERALDA COUNTY.

Discussion: AS THE LOW MOVES INTO NORTHERN NEVADA TUESDAY... WINDS WILL LIKELY BECOME FAIRLY STRONG ACROSS NORTHWEST ARIZONA.

  AFFECTED AREAS: 
CALIFORNIA: FIRE WEATHER ZONE 226 OWENS VALLEY/SOUTHERN INYO FOREST. 
NEVADA: FIRE WEATHER ZONE 460 ESMERALDA AND NYE COUNTY DESERTS/CNC DISPATCH.

TIMING: WINDS WILL INCREASE MONDAY MORNING AND WILL BE STRONG THROUGHOUT MONDAY AFTERNOON AND EARLY EVENING BEFORE DIMINISHING BY 8 PM.

WINDS: SOUTH 20 TO 30 MPH WITH GUSTS NEAR 40 MPH.

HUMIDITY: 5 TO 10 PERCENT MUCH OF THE DAY.

IMPACT: COMBINATION OF GUSTY WINDS AND LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY COMBINED WITH DRY FUELS WILL CREATE CONDITIONS THAT ARE FAVORABLE FOR EXTREME FIRE BEHAVIOR.

Instruction:
A RED FLAG WARNING MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS ARE EITHER OCCURRING OR ARE IMMINENT. A COMBINATION OF STRONG WINDS... LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY... AND WARM TEMPERATURES WILL CREATE EXTREME FIRE GROWTH POTENTIAL.

Area: OWENS VALLEY/SOUTHERN INYO FOREST-ESMERALDA AND NYE COUNTY DESERTS/CNC DISPATCH-

Affected Counties or parts of: Inyo, San Bernardino

Sent: 2012-05-13T14:30:06-07:00
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Saturday, May 12, 2012

Fire Weather Watch: Dry Lightning - Modoc, Siskiyou Counties

Fire Weather Watch remains in effect from Monday morning through late Monday night for scattered thunderstorms for fire zone 285 in northeast California


AFFECTED AREA: FIRE ZONE 285 
TIMING: THUNDERSTORMS COULD BEGIN AS ISOLATED STORMS EARLY MONDAY MORNING. THUNDERSTORM COVERAGE IS EXPECTED TO INCREASE TO SCATTERED BY EARLY MONDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH MONDAY EVENING. 
RAINFALL POTENTIAL: THE THUNDERSTORMS WILL PRODUCE LITTLE OR NO RAINFALL AT THE BEGINNING. HOWEVER UP TO A TENTH OF AN INCH OF RAIN IS POSSIBLE UNDERNEATH THE CORE OF THE STORM BY MONDAY EVENING. 
IMPACTS: IN ADDITION TO LIGHTNING COVERAGE GUSTY AND ERRATICWINDS ARE LIKELY NEAR THE STORMS. 


Instruction:
A FIRE WEATHER WATCH MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS ARE FORECAST TO OCCUR. LISTEN FOR LATER FORECASTS AND POSSIBLE RED FLAG WARNINGS.


Area: MODOC COUNTY EXCEPT FOR THE SURPRISE VALLEY-


Affected Counties or parts of: Modoc, Siskiyou


Sent: 2012-05-12T14:34:41-07:00
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CZU 2008 Summit Fire Trial Delayed

Channing Parker Verden
 Los Gatos contractor accused of
starting the May 22, 2008 Summit fire
 
Summit Fire Trial Date Still Pending
Public defender representing Los Gatos contractor accused of starting massive inferno in May of 2008 is asking for six months to prepare, prosecutor says he'll object to such delay.

The trial for the Los Gatos contractor accused of starting the May 22, 2008 Summit fire could take several months to begin due to the appointment of a public defender who's unfamiliar with the complicated case and is asking for extra time to prepare.

Channing Parker Verden's trial setting hearing on May 9 got postponed one more week until May 16 since Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney David Boyd could not appear at that time.

"They've informed me that they would like six months before they'll even tell the court when they're ready," Boyd said Friday. "We'll know their final decision next Wednesday ... but we're not going to agree to that."

Santa Clara County Deputy Public Defender Javier Rios is now representing Verden. On Friday he said he intended to ask Superior Court Judge Rise Jones Pichon for more time to carefully review the case to be ready for trial.

Rios said the case is complicated with many witnesses, reports to study and photographs to examine. "I want to make sure that I'm doing everything I can to prepare the case for my client," he said.

Verden's previous attorney, Michael Hingle, withdrew from the case in February due to what Boyd said was the defendant's inability to pay for counsel.

Verden, who has been present during the hearings, is said to be heavily burdened by the charges brought against him stemming from Cal Fire investigators allegations that he left burning piles of debris at a home located at 31000 Summit Road owned by Los Gatos resident Andrew Napell, causing the fire.

Cal Fire has said the Summit fire burned 4,270 acres, began at 5:17 a.m., destroyed 35 residences, 64 outbuildings, caused 16 injuries and cost more than $16 million to fight.

A Google map on Cal Fire's website shows how the inferno engulfed many mountainous areas in Los Gatos and came dangerously close to Highway 17, 10 miles roughly from the center of town, according to Cal Fire spokesman Daniel Berlant.

Boyd said Verden has been charged with unlawfully causing a fire that causes an inhabited structure or property to burn, an allegation of causing multiple structures to burn and a misdemeanor health and safety code violation alleging negligently causing a fire.

If convicted, Verden could be sentenced to up to seven years in prison or receive probation or no jail time, Boyd said.

It's possible, however, that Verden could receive probation, Boyd said.
Source: Article at Los Gatos Patch: Link
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Thursday, May 10, 2012

CAL FIRE Hollister Air Attack Base is now staffed


CAL FIRE Hollister Air Attack Base ready

New Air Attack Officer takes command


S2T air tanker in action. / Photo credit U.S. Forest Service
In a sure sign that fire season is here the CAL FIRE Hollister Air Attack Base is now staffed with an air tanker and an air tactical reconnaissance and coordination airplane.

Two S2T air tankers will be assigned to Hollister ready to drop fire retardant on any wildfires breaking out statewide, CAL FIRE said in a news release.

As of Monday one air tanker and the air tactical plane were ready to go. The twin-engine, highly maneuverable S2Ts are former U.S. Navy patrol planes that have a capacity to carry 1,200 gallons of retardant.

With longer, warmer days and drier conditions fire danger starts to increase, said CAL FIRE. “The recent rains, while beneficial, did not make up for months of below average precipitation in the San Benito and Monterey County areas where we are in moderate drought condition,” said the news release.

The Hollister base is under the command of newly-appointed Battalion Chief Josh Nettles. Nettles, who took over on April 30, has been in the fire service since 1998. He is a certified Air Tactical Group Supervisor and has a private pilot’s license.

CAL FIRE has operated an air attack base at the Hollister Municipal Airport for 50 years. The base has living quarters, a retardant mixing base, control tower and mechanical shop.

New fires in California can be reached within 20 minutes with 23 air tankers placed strategically around the state, CAL FIRE said.
Source: The Californian - Link
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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Sierra LaMar case: Red VW linked to missing teen found


A red Volkswagen Jetta with a black hood is associated with the disappearance of Sierra LaMar, the 15-year-old South Bay girl who has been missing since March, Has been recovered by the Santa Clara County sheriff's office.

 Updated Breaking News: Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office have located the red Volkswagon Jetta that investigators believe is associated in the disappearance of missing Morgan Hill teen Sierra Lamar.

The sheriff's office would not say when or where the vehicle was found, or the circumstances that led to its discovery.

"It's still an open investigation," Sgt. Jose Cardoza said. "They don't want to compromise the investigation."

Investigators are still asking to speak with anyone who may have seen the VW Jetta or had contact with the occupants in south County around the time Sierra disappeared on the morning of March 16. She was last seen at her home in unincorporated Morgan Hill, located near Palm and Dougherty avenues.

"They need information from people who saw it just before, during or after," Cardoza said. "They need people to come forward."


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Sierra Lamar Case: Suspect car Red 1990s Volkswagen Jetta, Black Hood

Sierra LaMar case: Red VW linked to missing teen
A red Volkswagen Jetta with a black hood is associated with the disappearance of Sierra LaMar, the 15-year-old South Bay girl who has been missing since March, Santa Clara County sheriff's investigators said Monday. Sierra is 5 feet 2 inches tall with a thin build, dark hair and an olive complexion.

*Update*: Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office have located the red Volkswagon Jetta that investigators believe is associated in the disappearance of missing Morgan Hill teen Sierra Lamar.

The sheriff's office would not say when or where the vehicle was found, or the circumstances that led to its discovery.

"It's still an open investigation," Sgt. Jose Cardoza said. "They don't want to compromise the investigation."

Investigators are still asking to speak with anyone who may have seen the VW Jetta or had contact with the occupants in south County around the time Sierra disappeared on the morning of March 16. She was last seen at her home in unincorporated Morgan Hill, located near Palm and Dougherty avenues.

"They need information from people who saw it just before, during or after," Cardoza said. "They need people to come forward."

Authorities released a photo of a red 1990s, four-door Jetta, which they said resembles the one they are looking for. Unlike the car in the photo, the one being sought has a black hood, investigators said.

Sheriff's Sgt. Jose Cardoza said investigators had focused on the car from witnesses' descriptions and by viewing surveillance video from homes, businesses and buses in Sierra's neighborhood.

The Jetta was seen in the general area of where Sierra lives near Morgan Hill and where her belongings were found after she vanished, said Cardoza, who declined to elaborate.

Her mother, Marlene LaMar, said she last saw Sierra at home about 6 a.m. March 16 before the girl was to leave to catch a bus to school at nearby Palm and Dougherty avenues.

A day later, search teams found her cell phone off the side of the road near Santa Teresa Boulevard and Scheller Avenue, in the opposite direction of the bus stop. The day after that, they found her Juicy Couture-brand purse near Santa Teresa and Laguna Avenue, a short distance from where her phone was found.

Inside were a neatly folded pair of pants, undergarments and gray San Jose Sharks sweatshirt her family believes she may have been wearing the day she disappeared, authorities said.

Also found near the bag were Sierra's schoolbooks, Sheriff Laurie Smith said. The purse and books were "wedged between a building and a big cactus" or bush, Smith said.

Dive teams have searched several reservoirs as well as smaller percolation ponds in the Morgan Hill area.

The sheriff's office also said Monday that an empty handcuff box and used condoms found within 2 miles of the teenager's home were not related to Sierra's disappearance. Investigators had initially thought there might be a connection when the items were found March 29.

How to help
Anyone with information on Sierra LaMar is asked to call sheriff's investigators at (408) 808-4500 or an anonymous tip line at (408) 808-4431, or text (408) 421-6760. People can also e-mail the sheriff's office at tips@sheriff.sccgov.org, or find more information on the Facebook page Find Sierra LaMar.

 Source: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/05/07/BADD1OEFRN.DTL#ixzz1uGRzX41T 

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****REMINDER**** Every fire has the ability to be catastrophic. The wildland fire management environment has profoundly changed. Growing numbers of communities, across the nation, are experiencing longer fire seasons; more frequent, bigger, and more severe, fires are a real threat. Be careful with all campfires and equipment.
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