SAN DIEGO FIRES – TUESDAYOctober 23, 2007
Here is a brief update of the wildfire situation plaguing the San Diego area. New fires as off-shoots of the two main fires; “Witch Creek,” to the North, and “Harris,” to the South are being reported regularly. There are now so many “named” fires, it’s tough to keep up. The area maps below give perspective of the magnitude of the problems. Santa Ana winds with gusts of 50 mph continue in canyon areas, and fires further spread assisted by prevailing off-shore breezes started early this morning. Basic utilities, particularly power and cable, are down to many residents with no ETA as to restoration. Understandably, the fires and summer-like temperatures in the 80’s are straining the power grid, affecting other services, including water in some areas. All schools in the area remain closed, as are many, particularly larger, businesses. There is no shortage of shelter space available for evacuees, however, some are at capacity with more opening as new areas become affected. QualComm Stadium, the area’s main evacuee center, and “staging” ground for the Red Cross and other volunteers, is currently housing approximately 30,000 of the nearly 300,000 evacuated thus far. Thanks to overwhelming support, non-cash donations are not needed at this time, however, this is an escalating problem, and the situation changes frequently.
LARRY HIMMEL of SAN DIEGO NEWS 8 REPORTS AS HIS HOUSE BURNS TO THE GROUND: