Friday, January 30, 2015

CA-LAFD- River - LAFD: Dog Spotted In River Saved With Technical Hoist Rescue #CASAR #CAFire #CARescue #CAPets

Great Job Los Angeles Fire Department Saving Dog In Los Angeles River

LAFD *River Rescue* 
 LAFD searching by ground and air for possible dog floating down Los Angeles River LAFD helicopter and safely hoisted the dog to the nearby embankment
where additional firefighters rendered immediate care
Location: LA River X Barham Overpass; 
MAP; FS 86;
Dispatched Units: BC14 E60 E86 H3 H5; Ch:5,12 @ 3:45 PM

*UPDATE: LA River X Barham Overpass* LAFD has made visual on dog (yellow
lab?) floating in LA River near Forest Lawn. Firefighters commencing a
rescue. - Erik Scott###

*UPDATE: LA River X Barham Overpass* A Firefighter was lowered from a
LAFD helicopter and safely hoisted the dog to the nearby embankment
where additional firefighters rendered immediate care, NFD (no further
details). - Erik Scott###


Kern County: Off-Duty Mount Shasta Firefighters Face Gunfire During Roadside Assistance #CAFire #CALaw

Man steals car in Lemoore, then shoots at firefighters on I-5

Read more here:
A suspect who crashed a stolen vehicle near Interstate 5 late Thursday evening allegedly fired upon firefighters and law enforcement before killing himself.
The incident began shortly before 11:52 p.m. when two off-duty Mount Shasta firefighters stopped to help a motorist who crashed in a vacant field by Interstate 5 north of Lost Hills. Kern County sheriff’s deputies said the motorist opened fire on the firefighters as he ran from his vehicle.
The firefighters were uninjured.
Deputies and California Highway Patrol officers arrived shortly afterward. Deputies said the suspect also fired upon them from where he was hiding under a tumbleweed.
The officers did not return fire, and the sheriff’s SWAT team responded to the scene. SWAT members approached the suspect and found he was dead from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, deputies said.
Deputies later found the suspect’s vehicle had been reported stolen to the Lemoore Police Department. The suspect’s name was not released.
Anyone with information regarding this case is asked to call the Kern County Sheriff’s Office at 861-3110 or Secret Witness at 322-4040. Refer to case number SR15-02564.
Source: Fresno Bee:

Read more here:


Mexico City: Gas Truck Hose Leak and Explosion Destroys Children's Hospital

Mexico City Explosion: 2 killed, 73 injured including 21 babies that were rushed to other hospitals

MEXICO CITY — Injured and bleeding, mothers carrying infants fled from a maternity hospital shattered by a powerful gas explosion Thursday, and rescuers swung sledgehammers to break through fallen concrete hunting for others who might be trapped.

A paramedic holds the hands of a newborn as his colleague attends to the baby's mother, who was evacuated from the maternity and children's hospital in Cuajimalpa, on the outskirts of Mexico City, Thursday, Jan. 29, 2015. The woman give birth to her baby in the ambulance after a powerful gas tank truck explosion shattered the maternity and children's hospital on the western edge of Mexico's capital, killing at least three adults and one baby and injuring dozens. (AP Photo)

A woman and child were killed and 73 people were injured in the blast that collapsed about three-fourths of the hospital, Mexico City officials said. By late in the day, rescuers determined no one was left trapped in the rubble.

The explosion occurred at 7:05 a.m. when a tanker truck was making a routine delivery of gas to the hospital kitchen and gas started to leak. Witnesses said the tanker workers struggled frantically for 15 or 20 minutes to repair the leak while a large cloud of gas formed.

"The hose broke. The two gas workers tried to stop it, but they were very nervous. They yelled for people to get out," said Laura Diaz Pacheco, a laboratory technician.

"Everyone's initial reaction was to go inside, away from the gas," she added. "Maybe as many as 10 of us were able to get out ... The rest stayed inside."

Workers on the truck yelled: "Call the firefighters, call the firefighters!" said anesthesiologist Agustin Herrera.

People started to evacuate the hospital, and then came a devastating explosion that sent up an enormous fireball and plumes of dust and smoke. Herrera saw injured mothers walking out carrying babies. Officials said 110 people were inside the 35-bed hospital when the truck blew up.

"We avoided a much bigger tragedy because the oxygen tanks right beside (the area) didn't explode," Herrera said.

The worst hit parts of the hospital were the neonatology, reception and emergency reception units, he said.

Margarita Palma of Amexgas, a trade association of Mexico's propane distributors, said 80 percent of Mexicans use propane rather than natural gas delivered by mains. Liquified propane, which is highly explosive, is distributed to homes and businesses either by trucks like the one that exploded or in cylinders, she said.

Homes next to the hospital had broken and cracked windows and fallen shingles from the blast, and many neighbors ran to help evacuate victims from the debris, local resident Carlos Soria Rezendiz said.

As the day wore on, people arrived at Hospital ABC offering diapers and baby formula. There was an hour-long wait to donate blood.

It was the closest hospital to the explosion and received 31 patients, including 17 children.

There were seven babies with serious injuries in intensive care, said Dr. Moises Zielanowski, the hospital's director of operations, as well as four adults in serious condition. Injuries included burns, fractures and bruises.

He said the hospital was working to identify six of the babies who arrived unaccompanied and without identification.

The gas truck driver and two other employees of the Express Nieto company were hospitalized but were in custody, Mancera said. He said the company has provided gas to all the city's public hospitals since 2007.

 original article: AP source

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Santa Ana Winds Stoke Ontario Mulch Fire Hampered Fight #CAFire

Gusting Winds Hamper Ontario Green waste Mulch Pile Fire

Ontario Firefighters battled a stubborn fire fueled by strong Santa Ana winds on Saturday, Jan. 24, 2015.
Photo Credit ABC

Update 0700 1-25: The where the fire started lost a small hay barn and two small sheds, It was still burning at 7 a.m., though winds had died down and firefighters had contained the fire, according to Ontario Fire Department deputy chief Mike Pelletier.
Start: 1-24 9:15 p.m
Location: Ontario green waste mulching and processing facility in the area of Chino and Grove avenues, an agricultural side of the city.
Weather: Santa Ana winds gusting up to 30 mph
Smoke: Smoke plume has as far as 20 miles away in Brea.
Structure Losses: Small hay barn and two small sheds, Ontario Police Department officials said.


Kern River District Prescribed Fire 1,000 acres #CAFire

Kern River District Prescribed Burns

Incident Overview

Kern River Ranger District Fire Management personnel have implemented hazardous fuel reduction projects on three mountaintops surrounding the Kern River Valley. Two of the projects, initiated in 2013, are in the second phase.
The projects are located in the mountains of Greenhorn, Piutes and Breckenridge. All projects are on forest land adjacent to communities dense with high amounts of hazardous fuels. Fuel reduction activities on the projects will have beneficial impacts on health and public safety in the project areas by reducing the risk of a stand-replacing fire and restoring natural ecosystems.

Basic Information

Current as of1/23/2015 12:59:32 PM
Incident TypePrescribed Fire
LocationThe projects are located in the mountains of Greenhorn, Piutes and Breckenridge. All projects are on forest land adjacent to communities dense with high amounts of hazardous fuels.
Incident CommanderFuels BC, Ernie Villa
Incident DescriptionKern River Ranger District Fire Management Personnel Implementing Hazardous Fuel Reduction Projects On Three Mountaintops Surrounding The Kern River Valley.

Current Situation

Fuels Involved
Varying fuels types in units include, grass, slash piles, brush and timber.
Significant Events
The Forest Service expects to burn 1,000 acres, in small units, designed to minimize effects of smoke on communities. Smoke will be visible from most communities surrounding Isabella Lake.


Fire managers are working closely with the Eastern Kern and San Joaquin County Air Pollution Control Districts to manage smoke production and reduce any local impacts.

Current Weather

Weather Concerns
Prescribed burn efforts will continue throughout the winter as weather and air quality permit.


Friday, January 23, 2015

Auburn: Loss Of SAFER Grant Money Reduces Response Capability #CAFire

Overlapping emergency calls spur concern

Staffing shifts build reliance on use of outside agencies
Overlapping emergency calls have been a thorn in the side of the Auburn Fire Department in the first weeks of 2015 as crews attempt to meet public need under new staffing conditions.
The loss of federal grant funding for five temporary firefighters, coupled with the city’s inability to afford all of the positions on its own, have raised concerns within the department about the personnel and equipment available during emergencies.
While the city was able to retain two of the firefighters with a third hired into an open position, two others were not retained.
The loss of these positions automatically caused a shift in the personnel and equipment at the department’s disposal, said Division Chief Corey Zander.
Between Jan.1 and Jan. 12, Auburn firefighters had to rely on outside fire departments six times due to simultaneous medical aid calls.
By comparison, crews had five calls they could not immediately answer in all of 2014, according to Zander.
“A concern we have right now would be the issue we have with simultaneous incidents where our one engine is committed to a call and we receive an additional call for service,” he said in an email. “We have to ask for help from another department due to only having the staffing for one engine instead of two with the loss of the SAFER firefighter positions.”
The federal SAFER grant, or Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response grant, allowed the city to hire five temporary firefighters for two years without requiring matching funds from city coffers.
Zander, who also represents the Auburn Firefighters Association, said while some of the firefighters were retained permanently, there is simply not enough staff to run a second engine safely or effectively.
“We have had six simultaneous incidents for Jan.1 through Jan. 12 with the longest ‘code 3’ response time being 13 minutes for a cardiac emergency patient. The closest available engine responded from Penryn. Our one engine was committed to a structure fire six minutes prior to the medical aid and was unable to respond,” he said.
City Manager Tim Rundel said he had not been informed of any problems regarding emergency responses within the city nor had he seen an official report from the department.
Rundel said he would not “negotiate through the press” and said early criticisms of the program were “discouraging.”
“We have more services now than we had prior to the SAFER grant,” he said. “I look forward to reviewing their reports.”
Rundel said the city made a substantial effort to retain as many firefighters as possible toward the end of the SAFER and said adjustments would be made as needed once all of the data was reviewed.
Council member Daniel Berlant, who also works as a CAL FIRE public information officer, said he does not believe the staffing concerns are connected to the ongoing labor negotiations between the city and the Auburn Firefighters Association.
Berlant said the issue comes down to not only meeting the daily average demand for emergency services, but also planning for worst case scenario events, like large scale wildfires.
“Those are the type of emergencies we need to staff a department for,” he said.
The council member said the city must weigh adequate staffing needs and its finite financial resources to balance public safety services effectively....


CAL FIRE Cleans Up Fire Academy Mess Amid CHP Sex Probe #CAFire

Two Cal Fire workers fired, one resigns, 13 others disciplined in Ione academy probe

 The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection on Wednesday fired two firefighters, accepted the resignation of a third and said it would discipline 13 others in connection with evidence of dishonesty, misuse of state equipment and other policy violations uncovered during a $2 million probe of allegations of misconduct leveled at the fire academy in Ione.

Read more here:

The investigation of misconduct at the Cal Fire Academy in Ione was initiated after former Cal Fire Battalion Chief Orville Fleming, seen at his arraignment in Sacramento Superior Court on May 20, 2014, was charged with killing his girlfriend. Fleming’s wife said he and other firefighters had engaged in sex with prostitutes at the academy and said she had seen a tape of such activities. RANDY PENCH SACRAMENTO BEE FILE

Read more here:
The probe, conducted for the agency by the California Highway Patrol, was initiated in the wake of the May 1 slaying of 26-year-old Sarah Douglas. Authorities have charged her boyfriend, ex-battalion chief Orville “Mo” Fleming, with her slaying. Fleming’s wife leveled accusations after the killing that Fleming and other firefighters had engaged in sex with prostitutes at the academy and said she had seen a tape of such activities.
Cal Fire said the probe unearthed no evidence of a sex tape, a finding echoed by Sacramento County sheriff’s investigators. But the CHP investigation uncovered other abuses that led to disciplinary actions against a total of 16 Cal Fire employees, 15 of them instructors at the academy and the 16th an employee in the field.
“There’s a variety of policy violations, including dishonesty, misuse of state equipment, misuse of state time and compromising the hiring process,” Cal Fire spokesman Daniel Berlant said. “None are connected to the allegations that were made.
“All, though, were discovered as part of the investigation that the CHP has been conducting for us over the last six or seven months into the initial allegations that were made. In that process, other violations were discovered.”
In addition to the three who are no longer employed at Cal Fire, all but one of the 13 employees facing discipline were notified as of Wednesday, Berlant said. The final employee is on vacation and had not yet been reached. All 16 were placed on administrative leave last month as preliminary results of the probe became available.
Discipline for those who remain employed at Cal Fire will range from reductions in pay to suspension to demotion, Berlant said.
The murder charge against Fleming, as well as the accusations leveled by his wife, brought embarrassing scrutiny to Cal Fire as it was entering the height of a challenging fire season last summer, and the agency director said Wednesday that misconduct by workers cannot be allowed.
“The CHP investigation brought to light the actions of a few individuals that violate the public trust,” Cal Fire Chief Ken Pimlott said in a statement issued Wednesday. “We are pursuing the disciplinary process to the furthest extent allowed. This type of behavior will not be tolerated.
“I would like to extend my appreciation to the California Highway Patrol for the consummate professionalism displayed by their investigators during the course of this investigation.”
Mike Lopez, president of Cal Fire Local 2881, which represents the firefighters, said he could not discuss reasons for the discipline and said each of the employees can appeal.
“My understanding is it has to deal with the possibility of there being discipline for procedural and policy breakdowns in our academy, and each one of those is different from one to the other,” he said. “We’ll allow due process to take its place; we’ll represent our members to the best of our abilities.
“It’s something that no one wants to see at the place of employment where they work, and we’ll do the best we can to make sure the rights of employees are followed through.”
The sensational allegations began with the slaying of Douglas and the subsequent manhunt for Fleming, who hid out for 16 days, spending most of the time hunkered down under some brushy growth not far from the south Sacramento home where Douglas’ body was discovered.
Fleming, 56, has pleaded not guilty in her stabbing and strangulation death. He is being held without bail at the Sacramento County jail and faces his next hearing in Sacramento Superior Court on March 10, when a trial readiness conference is scheduled.

Read more here:


Sacramento: Small Fire Under Investigation at Governor's Mansion Park

Small Fire Under Investigation at Governor's Mansion Park

CAL FIRE Asking Public’s Help with Information

Sacramento - Following a small fire on the grounds of the Governor's Mansion State Historic
Park in Sacramento, CAL FIRE- Office of the State Fire Marshal investigators are looking into how the fire started.
Photo of small metal hand cart with charred debris from fire
Around 1 p.m. on Sunday, January 18, a California State Park ranger discovered a small extinguished fire next to the carriage house.
Several fire investigators from CAL FIRE-Office of the State Fire Marshal were dispatched to investigate what appeared to be a suspicious fire.
 Fire investigators found debris on a small metal hand cart had caught fire with several exploded butane and propane canisters nearby. The cart was located outside the carriage house at the time of the fire and did cause damage to the paint of the exterior wall, but the structure itself remained undamaged.
 While the fire is suspicious, CAL FIRE- Office of the State Fire Marshal, along with California State Parks and the California Highway Patrol, has not determined an exact cause. 
 The Mansion was closed during the time of the fire and investigators are asking anyone who may have witnessed any suspicious activity in the area to come forward. 

Anyone with information about the fire is urged to contact the CAL FIRE Arson Hotline at 1-800-468-4408. Callers can remain anonymous.


Monday, January 19, 2015

LAFD: Christmas Tree Sparks Van Nuys Apartment Fire #CAFire

Christmas Tree Sparks Van Nuys Apartment Fire

The cause of the fire was determined to be electrical, involving the family's still-decorated Christmas tree, which fervidly fueled the blaze.

This video done by the NIST shows a VERY DRY Christmas tree on fire in a room. It takes a little over 30 seconds for the room to flashover.

VAN NUYS - A woman escaped with only minor injury, and her toddler son was unharmed, when fire - involving a Christmas tree - swept through their San Fernando Valley apartment Sunday afternoon.

The Los Angeles Fire Department received the first of several 9-1-1 calls at 3:48 PM on January 18, 2015 reporting fire in the Haskell Village Apartments at 6825 Haskell Avenue in Van Nuys. Firefighters arrived quickly to discover flames showing from the 3rd floor balcony of a three story 21,540 square-foot building of 2 occupied floors over parking

Thirty-seven firefighters under the command of Battalion Chief Dean Zipperman skilfully confined flames to the one apartment, extinguishing the blaze in just 16 minutes. During their comprehensive search of the smoke charged premises, Firefighters discovered and rescued an uninjured pet cat from the burning apartment. 

LAFD Paramedics briefly treated the injured woman for heat and smoke exposure, before transporting her and her son to a nearby hospital for further evaluation. Neither had sustained burn injury. 

Functional smoke alarms were found inside the burning apartment, but their role in alerting the woman could not be immediately determined. The building-wide fire alarm system had been manually activated prior to the LAFD's arrival. The 30 year-old building did not feature optional fire sprinklers

Firefighter efforts proved successful in limiting fire damage to $25,000 ($15,000 structure & $10,000 contents) within the one unit, sparing the building's 27 other apartments from harm.

The cause of the fire was determined to be electrical, involving the family's still-decorated Christmas tree, which fervidly fueled the blaze.

The fire comes more than three weeks after Christmas, and despite a month long Citywide campaign by the Fire Department and City's Bureau of Sanitation to have residents remove the hazardous trees from their homes. The campaign took a greater sense of urgency following a January 6 fire in North Hollywood that destroyed a residence and hospitalized three Los Angeles Firefighters

Dispatched Units: T90 E290 RA90 RA890 E239 E39 T39 EM14 BC10 E81 RA88 AR2 RA39

# # #

San Luis Obispo County Small Plane Crash No Injuries #ACDown

Small Plane Crash-Lands in San Luis Obispo County

A small plane crash landed on a private property near Gifford Ranch Road, south of Highway 166 in San Luis Obispo County, California, on January 16.

The authorities said the pilot reported engine troubles and informed San Luis Obispo Airport authorities that he would try to make an emergency landing at Highway 166. However, the communication was then disrupted and the plane was found in an upside down position in a riverbed near the highway.

There were 2 people aboard the plane at the time of incident; both of them remained uninjured. They were identified as the pilot John Charles Butler, 76, of Phoenix, Arizona and his passenger Pamela Butler Zirion, 67, of San Luis Obispo.

The FAA and the NTSB are investigating.


Sunday, January 18, 2015

Oregon: Must See - Man Pinned In Chevy Between Two Semi Trucks...

Man Pinned Between Two Semi Trucks...

The man reportedly got stuck when two semi trucks flattened his Chevy Silverado. He survived, and only needed two Band-Aids.

The image shows Kaleb Whitby, 27 in what used to be his four-door pickup truck, wedged tightly between two semis.

The huge pile-up occurred in eastern Oregon involving 100 people and 26 cars.
The incident left 12 people injured Saturday.

Heavy winds and fog, combined with icy road conditions on the stretch of Interstate 84.
The crash occurred shortly before 5 a.m. east of Baker City, about 130 miles northwest of Boise, Idaho.

The man reportedly got stuck when two semi trucks flattened his Chevy Silverado. He survived, and only needed two Band-Aids.



More than three months after a Robert Limon was shot to death at a Tehachapi rail yard, investigators arrested Limon's wife, Sabrina Limon, 35, and her lover, Jonathan Hearn, 24.

Accused of plotting the crime together, they are both facing first-degree murder charges. They were arrested Tuesday. Hearn is employed as a firefighter in Redlands.

Sabrina Limon has since been released for lack of evidence.

Robert Limon was found dead inside a BNSF railway shop on August 17.

Limon's co-workers said he was a dedicated employee who worked as much as he could to be able to provide for his wife and two kids.

The sheriff's office investigated hundreds of leads thanks to tips from the community.

Twitter Buttons

****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.

"I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts, and beer." --Abraham Lincoln

View blog top tags

Subscribe via email to California Fire News - Keep track of Cal Fire News

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner