Freeway Brush Fire
Near Our House
Angst close to
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Our home is on the rim
of a large canyon. The canyon is also a city park that has
heavy vegetation, brush, large trees and plenty of dry
grass. The side of the canyon also hosts a major
cross-town freeway. Many times we have had fires started
by cigarettes tossed from cars passing by. In fact,
cigarettes are the most common cause of fires in this
canyon. We have witnessed, on occasion, traffic accidents
that have also resulted in brush fires. So, given our
location, we are always on the alert for the smell of smoke or
the sounds of fire equipment on the move.
Kathleen was next door
at the neighbors and called me to say that she could see
activity in the canyon along I-52, so I went out to investigate.
The photos below are
what we saw.
Living on the canyon can
be exciting at times. We greatly appreciate the timely
response of the local fire control teams. We saw engines
from the San Diego Fire Department as well as the Miramar Fire
Department (associated with MCAS Miramar) and while they appeared
to "over-respond" I would much, much prefer that situation to the
under-response and letting the fire spread to the housing
development that was very close by.
When I got to the rim of the canyon on the cul-de-sac outside my
driveway, this is what I saw. The smoke was dense and
whatever brush in that area was going up fast. We heard
the fire department helicopter departing the scene after a water
A little work with the zoom lens showed that there were already
several pieces of equipment on the scene.
Several of the firemen had cut through the chain link fence that
isolates the freeway to provide access for their hoses. My
neighbor Akmal commented that the location of the fire is
actually on a community golf course and therefore the cause of
the fire likely had nothing to do with the freeway. The
implication, of course, was that one of the golfers had likely
thrown a cigarette. Either that or arson.
While the first team worked, traffic on the freeway was backing
up. Before long, the freeway would be fully shut
down. Note the two trucks approaching the scene along the
shoulder of the road.
As we watched, the "big iron" started rolling in. Note the
6x6 truck at the center of the photo above. This truck is
a 4 door truck and looks very much like Thor with 6-wheel
drive. Also note the news crew with their tripods in the
middle of one of the traffic lanes.
Soon another 6x6 truck also appeared.
Arriving next was a large water tanker; just to the right of the
From the northeast the fire attack helo returned after filling
up his tanks.
The helicopter circled a number of times waiting for drop
Plenty of equipment is on the scene now: helicopter above and
many large trucks below.
As the ground crew got the upper hand, the helo was waved off
and he dumped his water load over the canyon. Hopefully,
there were no hikers on that trail, although it would have made
a great story. I assume that the helicopter did not want
to land with a full load of water or waste fuel transporting it
back to base.
As the ground crews brought the fire under control the smoke
plume was greatly reduced.
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