The evacuation line is now about two blocks away from our street, but fortunately the fire is much farther. However the Santa Ana that pushed the fire west will give way this evening to the more usual ocean breezes that flow east and that could bring the fire to us. Here is a picture from shortly after the fire started this morning. All the area in the picture has been evacuated. The chaparral in the foreground makes good fuel once it catches.
OUCH! Please be safe, Allan!
Allan, don't take chances. And for goodness sakes, stay safe!
And if you do have to evacuate, don't forget to leave food out for fleeing sasquatches :)
Allan, this dreadful scene and so close to you reminds me once again that safety is such a ephemeral thing. Do stay safe and keep us informed as you are able.
My daughter and her adult family members are all part of a volunteer fire dept. in Newport, WA. They live in a forest and they all have spray on protection for their home and vehicles when a fire is eminent. I asked Larry for information about it and will send it as soon as I know.
The Carlsbad fire started approximately a half mile from where I work. At the directions of my wife, I left work early to go get my kids in Valley Center. Worried about other fires in North San Diego county, the parents were flooding in to pick up their kids. I knew about the Carlsbad fire as it had been pointed out to me by a co-worker just minutes earlier. As I left work, I saw the grey and black smoke in my rear view mirror and though it must just be coincidence.
We were worried for a good portion of the day that the I-15 Highway Fire would get to our home. Fortunately, we're all ok and it doesn't look as if the fire will jump the freeway to smoke us out.
This was an amazing thing to watch develop. It was like an oven outside, with almost zero humidity. My wife said they had 75-80 mph winds where she worked. That kid of wind can move a fire in a big hurry.
Oh! how awful! Will be watching the progress.
We seem to be OK for now. Currently the big fire is in San Marcos and it looks terrible. The response this time has been much improved over the last big fire season in 2007. We were up in Monterey when they evacuated our neighborhood so there was nothing to do but watch it on TV. We've packed and can get out in short order if necessary.
The evacuation of Legoland went very slowly—it takes time picking up all those little pieces.
Allan and Greg:
Oh, it is called Barricade. It's at http://firegel.com/
Stay safe, Allan. I've always wondered why they have so many fires out there, and I don't understand it. Is it just dryness combined with the wind, or what?
It's a semiarid area. The natural vegetation is probably chaparral - very dry bushes that probably burn very well. Chaparral is very beautiful in a desertish Van Gogh-ish way, with subtle greens and reds.
The brush dies and dries out, year after year. Eventually, it becomes mulch but in the meantime, it sits, fuel for fires. Any fire source, lightning, human caused sparks, cigarette, whatever, can start a huge fire in a hurry. In this case, the extraordinarily low humidity, combined with the winds makes for a worst case scenario.
Several times a year traffic slows on I-15 south as firefighters put out fires on the hills west of the freeway. I'm convinced it's nearly always caused by some fool throwing a cigarette out the window. They're oblivious as to what they've caused, miles away as homes are threatened.
This year is worse than most, with the extremely low amount of rain and snow we've received in the west. Hopefully, next year will see el nina rainfall. Not that I know much about how that works. I've just read that odds are in favor of a decent amount of rainfall. I suppose then we can worry about floods ;-)
Welcome to the future.
The fire is now pretty well contained and most of the evacuations have been lifted this morning. Today will be another hot and windy day so it's hard to know what to expect. No loss of life and not too much loss of property so far. Right now I hear sirens again nearby.
This area would be semi-desert if it were not for irrigation. One advantage is that we have few insects compared to other places. The weather is usually pleasant with the prevailing winds coming from the ocean. It's one of five places in the world with a mediterranean climate. However, once in a while the winds reverse and hot dry air comes over the mountains from the desert. This is what brings on the fire season, usually in September and October. It is not a good sign that it is early this year.