Sunday, October 25, 2009

GeoCam deploying to CA-CZU-Loma fire

Retardant drop at the Loma Fire Credit: dandawson on flickr

GeoCam has just been invited to deploy to the Loma Fire on the border between Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties.

The fire takes the name "Loma" from Mt. Loma Prieta, which many people will recognize as the epicenter of the last major earthquake to hit the Bay Area in 1989. The fire started this morning, Sunday Oct 25, at 0425. The area got 10 inches of rain recently, but that wasn't enough to wet down the heavy fuels, and northerly winds up to 30 mph didn't help. According to the last update, the fire covers 800 acres, 0% containment, and growing fast.

The area is in a canyon along the San Andreas fault, hard to access from the ground, and lots of air resources have been called in. CAL FIRE is deploying Team 3 (a Type I team) to the fire. They will take over after a transition meeting at 2000 tonight.

We were invited to the fire by Jeff Gahagan, the comm unit leader for Team 3. We happened to meet him a couple of months ago at the Lake/Napa Unit Emergency Command Center in St. Helena where we staged the phones for fires in the Sonoma area -- we trained him on using the phones and he's seen the web interface as well.

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