Tuesday, October 23, 2007
FIRE - update 2:42pm
I'm working today, so not much time to take pictures outside. I can see from my window that the whole area is glowing yellow. Not from the fire, but from the sun. Not a sunny glow. The air is thick with smoke and the sun shining makes it glow. There is a heavy ash all over everything. At times you can see it falling from the sky. When I drove in to work this morning, I put a damp washcloth over my mouth and nose to breathe. You can feel it burn when you breathe. The temperature is hot, about 85, and the humidity is less than 25%. Wind WNW at 4mph right now but it peaked at about 38mph sometime during the night. The fires have grown and changed directions and even combining with other fires. Total homes evacuated is over 500,000 now. That's half a million HOMES! Figure at least 2 people per home - that's over 1 million people having to find shelter or hotel rooms in 2 days. Some evacuation orders have been ordered for the coastal towns of Del Mar, Solana Beach and Encinitas. Those orders are voluntary at this point, meaning people can leave now if they want to, or they can wait until the mandatory order is issued. I heard that there are no more hotel rooms between the Mexican border and the Orange County line. Here's a link to a google map that shows the fire areas, the evacuation areas and the shelters. If you are unfamiliar with the area, San Marcos is off the 78, right near the 15 intersection. You'll have to zoom in on the map to see it more clearly. Zoom in a bit farther and look where the two red exclamation point (!) triangles are near West Valley Parkway. Ok, now look a bit to the left. Do you see Harmony Grove under the left hand "!" ? Those people are being evacuated right now. A lot of wooded areas there and a lot of horses and country homes. I'm only speculating, but if the fire goes through Harmony Grove, it will go over the mountains and join back up where the fire started originally on the hills of San Marcos. The one that is 100% contained. Get it? The fire is circling around and weaseling its way back over here. There is plenty of water and power in San Marcos at the moment. SDG&E is asking everyone to cut back on any unnecessary electrical use, but that's about it. We have not been issued any evacuation orders at this time. Things change with the wind, so we are all glued to our television sets. I'll take some pictures when I get home tonight and post them. I know it's been a while without pictures.