Saturday, November 15, 2008

Sayre Fire, Sylmar, California

7:45 A.M. Nov 15, 2008
This dangerous wildfire has been named the Sayre Fire and started at Sayre Street in Sylmar.

Since 5:15 this morning the news has been only the Sayre Fire. There has been no news of the Tea Fire in Montecito, Santa Barbara. Hopefully that fire has been contained.

Officials were saying 10 homes have been lost. The news is showing a mobile home park where I counted at least 34 mobile homes burning. That is at least 44 homes lost. The news now says they have lost "dozens of structures", but there is still no exact number.

The Sayre Fire is being pushed by winds up to 50 mile per hour. The humidity is extremely low, currently 5% which increase fire danger. The temperature is predicted to reach into the 90s today. There is a red flag (danger) condition posted until 4 this afternoon.

Fast moving wildfires are driven by Santa Anna winds which are common this time of year.

I am on the coast 45 miles from the fire. We are in a coastal plain here. The sky is full of smoke from horizon to horizon. The winds are rapidly driving the smoke from the fire a very long distance. It gives you an idea of how bad these winds are.

Traffic in California is being severely affected. Interstate 5 is Closed. It is the main route from Northern California into Southern California. The two alternatives coming south are about 40 miles to the west on Highway 101 or 65 miles to the east on Interstate 15.

There are smaller mountain roads but heavy trucks cannot travel most of there roads. A tractor trailer big rig tried to use Highway 23 to go around this traffic mess and is stuck in a tight turn on this mountain road. The road is posted NO TRUCKS, but the driver disregarded or didn't see the signs.

Living on the coast, we are safe from any fire, but we relate to each area. The Sayer fire started about a mile from where my wife and I once had a business. It started 1/2 mile from where my wife grew up.

If you live near mountains in Southern California, you will be impacted by a fire at some time. The Tea Fire burned brush that has not burned for 30 years. The Sayre fire is burning in the area of the Marek and Sesnon Fires. It is almost the same area.

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