Sunday, June 27, 2010

Lakeside Fire Units Assist with Santee Vegetation Fire

Santee / Miramar-   Lakeside Fire Department Units Brush 2 and Battalion 1 were called to provide assistance to Santee Fire Department to suppress a fire North of Santee Lakes which eventually burned onto property on the MCAS Miramar Base.  The fire was held to approximately 260 acres thanks to the hard work of all of the cooperating agencies which included several agencies from the Central Zone as well as Miramar Fire Department, Cal Fire and USFS.

Lakeside Brush 2 pumps a hose line on Division Z
 The Lakeside Units were assigned to Division Z, which was the northern flank of the fire.  Acting Lakeside Battalion Chief Charles Weber was the Division Supervisor for Division Z, ultimately responsible for coordinating all of the suppression efforts on the north side of the fire.  Lakeside Brush 2 was one of the two engines used to provide water to the north end of the fire, which required approximately 5,000 ft. of 1.5" hose to extinguish.

A portable water tank is set up to provide water for the fire suppression
 A portable water tank was set up to address the need for water utilized for fire suppression and overhaul.    These tanks hold up to 1,500 gallons of water which are filled by Water Tenders, such as the one pictured above, to provide a constant source of water during the fire.  In remote locations water supply proves to be a challenging obstacle which must be addressed early on.  Having a steady flow of water helps expedite suppression and provide for crew safety during wildfire operations.

Protecting the Oak Trees was a priority on this fire
 Protecting property as well as the environment are priorities in wildland firefighting.  When a fire is burning through an area with trees that are able to be saved firefighters will try to keep the fire in the low laying ground fuels out of the trees and taller vegetation that take much longer to grow back.  This is not always possible but something we do if we can.

The fire pushing East towards the road

Lakeside Captain Victor Gonzales and Firefighter/Paramedic Eric Stamm waiting to put the fire out when it reaches the road
Firefighters commonly use dirt roads to help stop the fire.  In the picture above Lakeside firefighters wait for the fire to reach the road before extinguishing it.  This method helps provide for crew safety by allowing them to stand in an area the will not burn while putting out the fire.  It also decreases the work and time required to overhaul a fire by letting it burn up to an existing fire break.

A view of the grass after it had burned up to the road

This fire was an example of how effective our existing automatic and mutual aid systems are in Southern California.  If there was not the rapid response by several agencies who were able to seamlessly work in conjunction with one another this fire would have been much larger.  Using a well coordinated attack the firefighters on scene were able to keep this fire away from any populated areas thereby achieving our primary goal to provide for life safety.

View Lakeside Incidents and Story Map in a larger map

Story submitted by: Firefighter / Paramedic Bernie Molloy

1 comment:

  1. I was listening to the Heartland Fire scanner on the internet during this one. It was awesome to hear how coordinated everything was and how well all of the different departments worked together. Great job - Thanks!