What do history's most notorious despots have in common with many of the flag-waving, patriotic politicians of our day? Both groups rise to power through the exploitation of fear, which has become a societal plague. There have been widespread casualties. We need an antidote. Feardom offers its readers a much-needed immunization.
- 273,246 acres burned
- 113 injuries
- 15 deaths
- The fire spread at a rate of 3600 acres per hour in the first 36 hours.
- 2,232 homes destroyed
- 53 homes damaged
- 22 commercial properties destroyed
- 566 additional structures destroyed
- Estimated Cost to fight the fire: More than $31 million dollars
San Diego is on fire again. For up to date information on the (at present, eight) fires going on, go to this website.
At the time of writing this, there are massive ongoing evacuations. The fire is only a few miles from my parents’ home. My Aunt and Uncle who live in a nearby town have already evacuated. There is one reported death, and some injuries. Some have already said that this fire is worse than the Cedar fire four years ago.
My mother, the Deputy Mayor of Poway, was called several times last night while giving a fireside in a local Utah community by other city officials requesting she return home immediately. She had to bump up her flight today, and has now arrived home to take action. I’m sure my brothers, like they were in the Cedar fire, are at the shelter or line of fire, lending a hand where possible.
Please keep those affected in your prayers. They’ll be needing it as the hours go by, and the fire marches on.
UPDATES: (most recent at bottom)
- My cousin James just posted some pictures.
- This website is also a great resource for up to the minute information on the situation.
- Wow… check out the satellite images showing the smoke.
- Here’s one resident’s description of what’s going on.
- Also check out a local news channel live feed with the latest updates.
- This map shows the Poway evacuation area – the red dot is my parents’ home.
- The Red Cross has some helpful information regarding the fires.
- Weather.com has some photos worth checking out.
- Here are a bunch of video clips about the fire.
- Facebook users: get updates here.
- Here’s a Flickr album with a bunch of pictures of the fire.
- Check out this google map overlayed w/ burn area, fire locations, and evacuation center locations
- Latest stats:
Witch fire: 145,000 acres and zero percent contained. The cause is under investigation.
600 structures have been destroyed (500 residences, 50 outbuildings, 100 commercial properties)
300 structures have been damaged (250 residences, 75 commercial properties and 50 outbuildings)
Seven injuries to firefighters; one civilian injury
- CBS has a partial list of homes that have been confirmed to have been destroyed by fire.
- Here’s another google map with some good data.
- My mother and two of my brothers spent all day yesterday (10/22) at the Poway Community Center, one of the evacuation zones. After 4-5 hours of sleep, they’re back at the center for another day’s work. The Red Cross is spread very thin, so there is little support for Poway. If you live in the community and can help out, please go to the community center to lend a hand. They’re also in need of clean clothing, diversion materials (games, sudoku, magazines, etc.), and new, unopened medicine (ibuprofen, tums, benadryl, eyedrops, chapstick, etc.).
- In addition to a map, this website by SignOnSanDiego.com provides some great detailed data (see below the map).
- Press releases for Poway can be found here.
- Those who live nearby can find out how to help here.
- See the wind patterns for Southern California.
- Here are some aerial shots from NASA.
- One news report estimates that over half a million people have now been evacuated from their homes.
- SignOnSanDiego.com has a blog running with frequent updates.
- View the air quality in San Diego.
- If you use Google Earth, you can download a .kmz file showing overlays of fire data using MODIS data.
- Lots of information provided here by SDSU.
- My cousin Chad created this map, sing data from cbs8.com, showing houses that have burned down in Rancho Bernardo. (UPDATE: This map is incomplete. A more recent list of affected properties can be found here (PDF).)
- Current damage toll: 1,250 homes destroyed, 241,000 acres burned. (via signonsandiego.com)
- A primary damage assessment has been conducted in Poway. The result is this list (PDF) of known lost structures (burned homes/buildings)
- The LDS Church has sent six truckloads of supplies to help the victims of these fires.
- CNN has an interactive map showing the status of the various fires.
- The state has put together this website for the fires.
- Update from my dad:
We are all fine. No additional evacs in Poway. People may get to go back home (poway) tomorrow. Fires have moved past and others are dealing with that hardship now. Poway lost about 100 homes. Rancho Bernardo about 400. I think somewhere about 1000 in the county so far. We are ok, just tired. Lots to do… We are 99.9% out of danger now.
- The Google blog has a list of various maps for the fire.
- Latest stats from CNN: 1 million evacuees, 400,000+ acres burned, ~1500 homes destroyed.
- Poway residents:
If you are safe and are looking for a way to help out today, Merrilee Boyack (my mother, the Deputy Mayor) says that they are in need of volunteers to do a number of things at the Poway Community center. Look for Merrilee at the Community center, or give her a call on her cell to ask what you can do. 858-354-6703
POWAY EVACUATION CENTER IS NOT IN NEED OF ANY DONATIONS NOW. They are only accepting cash donations to hold against further needs.
- This is the first “firenado” I’ve ever seen.
- Just got off the phone w/ my mother. She said this situation is much different from four years ago. In the Cedar fire, those affected were primarily poor people, and so there was a lot of need afterwards. Few had insurance, and so a lot of families were in need of help. This time around, those affected in Poway were mostly well-to-do people in nice neighborhoods, so they (I’m assuming) all have insurance and are taking care of themselves. Only one fire victim from Poway went to the evacuation center (there were three centers at first, now they’re consolidating down to one). All the people from Ramona are still evacuated – the power went out, and so did the water pump, so the firefighters haven’t been able to use the water there to combat the flames. Things are calming down a bit, and most of Poway has opened back up to residents.
- San Diego residents: register your phone number with the Reverse 911 system.
- Here’s a compelling night shot of the skyline near the naval base.
- Officials believe that an arsonist is the cause of the fires.
- Two bodies were found in a burned Poway home. The death toll now stands at three.
- Here’s a news article about some of the losses in Poway.
- The wikipedia page for the fires already has an extensive amount of data.
- This page shows some pictures I received in an email this morning (thanks Kenneth). Very compelling.
- Here’s an MSNBC.com slideshow from the fires.
- MSNBC.com also has an interactive map w/ info on the fires.