Some evacuations lifted on Erskine Fire

Power line repair, Erskine Fire

Above: Power line repair, Erskine Fire. Undated uncredited photo from InciWeb.

(UPDATED at 9:17 a.m. PDT June 28, 2016)

Most of the evacuation orders have been lifted for residents that were forced to leave their homes during the Erskine Fire near Lake Isabella, California.

Map of the Erskine Fire
Map of the Erskine Fire. The square red icons represent heat detected by a satellite at 2:51 a.m. June 28, 2016. The red line was the fire perimeter at 11:30 p.m. PDT June 26, 2016.

The latest satellite overflight showed much-reduced heat on the Erskine Fire, only detecting heat on the southwest side where there was some westward movement of the fire. This does not mean the rest of the fire is out. The satellite is hundreds of miles away and only finds the larger heat sources. There is no doubt some fire activity in other areas, but this latest data does show that much of the fire is not still spreading.

Highway 178 is now open. However some roads off of Highway 178 remain closed, including Entrada, McCray Rd, Dogwood, Kelso Valley Rd and Kelso Creek Rd.

The incident management team has not updated the size of the fire since Monday when they said it had burned 45,388 acres.


(UPDATED at 7:15 a.m. PDT June 27, 2016)

The latest results from the damage assessment at the Erskine Fire at Lake Isabella, California reveal that at least 250 structures have been destroyed and another 75 were damaged.

The Incident Management Team reports that 45,388 acres have burned, an increase of about 9,000 acres over the figure released on Sunday.

Map Erskine Fire at 1130m MDT June 26, 2016
Map of the Erskine Fire. The red line was the fire perimeter at 11:30 p.m. PDT June 26, 2016.

On Sunday an incursion by a privately operated hobby drone in an area where helicopters were assisting with firefighting operations caused fire managers to ground all of the helicopters due to safety concerns. The drone operator was located and detained, and the helicopters were able to resume fire operations after a 30-minute delay.

The fire continued to spread Sunday on the southwest side toward Inspiration Point and has crossed Bright Star Creek.

Air tankers were very busy yesterday working on the south side of the fire.


(UPDATED at 8:45 a.m. PDT June 26, 2016)

Map Erskine Fire
Map of the Erskine Fire. The red line was the perimeter at 12:10 a.m. PDT June 26, 2016. The white line was the perimeter about 27 hours before. Click to enlarge.

The Erskine Fire at Lake Isabella, California continued to spread on Saturday. Most of the additional acres were on the southwest side five miles west of Kelso Valley Road.

The official size of the fire according to the IMT is 36,810 acres, an increase of about 1,000 acres since yesterday. The IMT has not released any updated information about structures since yesterday when they reported at least 150 homes have been destroyed and an additional 75 were damaged.

Erskine Fire.
Erskine Fire. Posted on InciWeb June 25, 2016.

The Red Cross Safe & Well site is available for those looking for loved ones affected by evacuations:


(UPDATED at 1:20 p.m. PDT June 25, 2016)

Within the last hour the incident management team released more information about the Erskine Fire at Lake Isabella in southern California. The work of the Damage Assessment team is ongoing but to date they are reporting that at least 150 homes have been destroyed and an additional 75 damaged. The team is in the process of creating a comprehensive report documenting all structures damaged or destroyed.

The Erskine Fire started on BLM managed public lands at the junction of Erskine Creek Rd and Apollo Way at approximately 3:51PM Thursday, June 23. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

They are calling it 35,700 acres. The Type 1 Incident Management Team assumed command at 8 p.m. PDT June 24, 2016.


(UPDATED at 9:40 a.m. PDT June 25, 2016)

Map Erskine Fire
Map of the Erskine Fire at 9 p.m. PDT June 24, 2016. Click to enlarge.

The Erskine Fire continued to spread Friday afternoon and evening, but mostly on the dog leg that branched off to the south. Most of the new burned area in the last 24 to 36 hours was west of Kelso Valley Road, but it did cross the road near Janice Avenue and a few other places. In that area the fuels, or vegetation, are light and could ignite, burn, and cool before the next overflight of a heat-sensing fixed wing aircraft or satellite, so the fire location data is not reliable there as it is in locations with heavier fuel. The incident management team is calling it 30,000 acres.

map Erskine Fire
3-D map of the Erskine Fire at 9 p.m. PDT June 24, 2016. Looking north. Click to enlarge.

There has been no recent update on the number or location of the structures that have burned. The last word on the subject from fire officials was:

100 structures have been lost and 1,500 additional structures are threatened. Additional information on structure damage will be posted as damage assessment teams are able to confirm details.

Burned dozer transport
Burned CAL FIRE dozer transport truck on Kelso Valley Road. Photo by Stuart Palley.


(UPDATED at 6:34 p.m. PDT June 24, 2016)

map Erskine fire
Map showing heat detected on the Erskine Fire by a satellite as late as 1:55 p.m. PDT (the red dots) June 24, 2016.

According to the incident managers of the Erskine Fire which is burning homes near Lake Isabella, California:

Current recommended evacuation – Hwy 178 to Kelso Valley to Piute.

Our wish is that they had been more specific and descriptive in describing the geographic area that should be evacuated. Perhaps some locals can tell us what “Piute” is — a road? Community?

Here is some additional information fire officials posted about evacuations:

Residents in the Lake Isabella and Erskine Creek area should prepare for possible evacuation. Additional evacuation information will be posted when it is available. Evacuations remain in effect for Bella Vista, South Fork, Weldon, Onyx, Lakeland Estates, Mountain Mesa, South Lake, Squirrel Valley, and Yankee Canyon. Hwy 178 is closed at Hwy 155 and at Sierra Way. Kernville Elementary School is now the primary shelter for evacuees. There are approximately 125 evacuees at the elementary school. The Red Cross Safe & Well site is available for those looking for loved ones affected by evacuations:

There has been no recent update on the number of structures burned since the estimate of 100 being destroyed was released at noon today.

In the 12 hours after we produced our last map at 2:26 a.m. PDT the fire took a sharp turn to the right and ran south for six miles. At 6 p.m. incident managers announced the fire had burned 30,000 acres.

In the map above the red dots at the lower right represent heat detected by a satellite at 1:55 p.m. PDT June 24. The fire approached Kelso Valley Road but we are not able to determine how close it got, or if it crossed the road. In that area the fuels, or vegetation, are light and could ignite, burn, and cool before the next satellite overflight, so the fire location data along and especially east of Kelso Valley Road is not reliable.


(UPDATED at 10:26 a.m. PDT June 24, 2016)

Fire officials managing the Erskine Fire at Lake Isabella, California now say the size of the fire is currently estimated at 19,034 acres. Approximately 100 structures have been lost and 1,500 additional structures are threatened.

There are currently 600 firefighters on scene, with several hundred more in route.

On Friday there will be 6 air tankers, including a very large air tanker, and 7 helicopters on the fire. Additional air resources are in route.


The spot weather forecast issued by the National Weather Service at 11 p.m. Thursday predicted for Friday, west winds of 5 to 8 mph in the morning increasing in the afternoon to 7 to 11 mph with gusts to 18.

A more recent forecast from the NWS for the fire area includes much stronger winds and a Red Flag Warning for the fire area. They predict sustained southwest winds of 24 mph with gusts up to 36, decreasing in the late afternoon. This will present a challenge for firefighters.

Weather Erskine Fire 6-24
Weather forecast for the Erskine Fire. Click to enlarge.


(UPDATED at 9:52 a.m. PDT June 24, 2016)

The powerful video below shows some of the conditions the firefighters were dealing with as the Erskine Fire at Lake Isabella burned homes. The video may not be visible on some devices.

The National Weather Service spot weather forecast for the Erskine Fire issued Thursday night calls for temperatures Friday in the low 90s, relative humidity around 10 percent, and west winds of 5 to 8 mph in the morning increasing in the afternoon to 7 to 11 mph with gusts to 18. Saturday will be warmer but less breezy.

Mike Minton’s Type 1 Incident Management Team will inbrief at noon on Friday. They will most likely assume command 6 to 18 hours later.

The below photo sequence of the first 30 minutes of the Erskine Fire shows how quickly it grew.

The area is under a Red Flag Warning on Friday.

wildfire Red Flag Warning Southern California
Red Flag Warning for Southern California, June 24, 2016.


(UPDATED at 5:57 a.m. PDT June 23, 2016)

Map Erskine Fire
Map showing heat detected on the Erskine Fire by a satellite at 2:26 a.m. PDT June 24, 2016. Click to enlarge.

In its first 10 hours the Erskine Fire at Lake Isabella scorched the earth over a path about 12 miles long by two miles wide. According to the latest figures released by the Kern County Fire Department at 5:45 a.m. approximately 8,000 acres and 100 structures have burned and another 1,500 structures are threatened.

Our very unofficial estimate using satellite data concludes that the fire had grown to well over 12,000 acres by Friday at 2:26 a.m. (see the map above).

This same data shows that the fire spread from just east of the town of Lake Isabella, north to Highway 178 in some places, and ran 12 miles east to within a mile of Kelso Valley Road.

Tyler Townsend, a PIO for Kern County Fire Department, said three firefighters suffered smoke inhalation injuries and were transported to a hospital.

Highway 178 is closed. Thursday night there were 350 personnel working on the fire. That number is expected to grow to 600 to 700 on Friday.

Areas under evacuation orders include 1,500 residences in Bella Vista, South Fork, Weldon, Onyx, Lakeland Estates, Mountain Mesa, South Lake, Squirrel Valley, and Yankee Canyon. The primary evacuation shelter is Kernville Elementary School.

A Type 1 Incident Management Team was ordered just a few hours after the fire started at about 4 p.m. on Thursday.

In 2014 two fires burned northwest of Lake Isabella near Highway 155 (Evans Road), the 2,600-acre Shirley Fire and the 4,000-acre Way Fire.

Map of Way Fire at 10 pm 8-20-2014
3-D map of the Way Fire at 10 p.m. 8-20-2014. The Shirley Fire that occurred across the highway in June is also shown. (click to enlarge)
Erskine Fire
Erskine Fire. Kern County Fire Department photo.
Erskine Fire
Erskine Fire. Kern County Fire Department photo.
Erskine Fire
Erskine Fire. Kern County Fire Department photo.


(Originally published at 8:07 p.m. PDT June 23, 2016)

The Erskine Fire in Kern County, California started about four hours ago and according to reports from Kern County Fire Department has already burned 50 to 60 structures and 2,500 acres and induced an order for a Type 1 Incident Management Team.

Evacuations are occurring at a hospital and residential areas.

As we are writing this, Kern County Fire Department is broadcasting live video on Facebook. A public information officer for the Fire Department is driving on streets where multiple residences are on fire and narrating as the impressive scenes roll past. At 8:30 p.m. he said “We are estimating 50 to 60 homes lost, but I believe it is well beyond that now.” The video will probably come and go, but you can check at their Facebook page for more.

Erskine Fire
Screen grab from the live Kern Co. FD video at the Erskine Fire 8 p.m. June 23, 2016
Erskine Fire
Screen grab from the live Kern Co. FD video at the Erskine Fire 8:29 p.m. June 23, 2016

The fire is about 30 miles northeast of Bakersfield, south of Isabella Lake, east of the community of Lake Isabella, south of Highway 178, and north of Erskine Creek Road.

We will update this article as more information become available.

map Erskine Fire
Approximate location of the Erskine Fire near Lake Isabella.
Erskine Fire
Erskine Fire at 7:29 PDT, June 23, 2016. From Lake Isabella Net.


Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire. Google+

49 thoughts on “Some evacuations lifted on Erskine Fire”

  1. Thanks for the info on the live feed. It starts out by showing our home (see the three large pine trees) that we just moved from and it has not burned. Other homes in Squirrel Mtn. Valley have burned. I’m still connecting with my friends there and so far none of them have lost their homes. Area is known for consistent low humidities, high temperatures and very high winds (daily).

    1. My Father lives on Camachee way in south lake and I have not been able to reach him and he doesn’t have a cell phone. Did houses on Camachee way make it? He has not contacted me and probably doesn’t have my number in memory. His name is Don Guttery and is 83 years old.

  2. Fire traveled over 6 miles in 4 hrs. High winds were predicted for the desert just to the east with 50 mph. High WUI with lots of senior residents. Winds predicted thru Friday 2200. CIIMT 5 Minton will be assuming fire.

  3. Can someone let me know if the fire is close to entrada rd/goat ranch road? My friend has a house at the top on Roberta ave… He’s not there but we are worried about the house. This is terrible, I’m so sorry for everyone affected by this.

    1. The video on the Kern County Fire Facebook page that PIO Tyler Townsend did last night shows him driving up Goat Ranch/Entrada Road (starting at the gas station at the Sierra Gateway Market at the corner of Hwy 178) and then nearing the top of that road there are numerous homes destroyed or on fire. The homes on the road prior to that point had fire engines next to them and were being saved/protected.

        1. Although the fire started a few blocks from the high school, it quickly moved out to the east and there have been neither reports nor photographic evidence of any structures burned in the town of Lake Isabella. The exact start location is given as Erskine Creek Road and Apollo Way.

    2. WaldenWalt says:
      June 24, 2016 at 8:23 am
      The video on the Kern County Fire Facebook page that PIO Tyler Townsend did last night shows him driving up Goat Ranch/Entrada Road (starting at the gas station at the Sierra Gateway Market at the corner of Hwy 178) and then nearing the top of that road there are numerous homes destroyed or on fire. The homes on the road prior to that point had fire engines next to them and were being saved/protected.

  4. Does anyone know if the hospital in my mesa has burned down. Or if the fire got to sagebrush rd, mt mesa

    1. I just moved from Sagebrush Road and recognized the Sagebrush Road/Mountain Mesa area on Tyler Townsend’s Kern County Fire video. It looked like the west side of Sagebrush Rd. was most impacted (especially near Seclusion Road, although I didn’t see any homes burned there in the video. Sagebrush on the east side of McCray Rd. had fire pass through the neighborhood, but again I didn’t see any homes burned (although the video might not have shown that). The video shows the Hospital intact with the large field between Sagebrush and the hospital fully burned off. The Mountain Mesa Park across the street from the hospital is being used as a staging area.

  5. Thank you for the live feed video coverage on FB. I live right off of Erskine Creek Rd. in Lake Isabella where this explosive wildfire fire started.
    I was stunned when I saw how fast the flames traveled up the hillside raging out of control.
    Fueled by dried brush and trees, along with very high winds, the neighboring communities of Mt. Mesa and South Lake also suffered the
    devastating destruction of this fire’s unpredictable path.
    Mandatory evacuations were in place as this fire was destroying homes, leading to the explosions of huge propane tanks, burning thousands of acres of land, tragically displacing residents along with wildlife.
    What a nightmare! I feel for the ones who have lost their homes- especially the elderly homeowners who have lived in their home for many years and have collected a lifetime of irreplaceable belongings that never had the chance to be handed down to their loved ones to share in memory.
    Thank you to all the firefighters for your hard work at saving lives, land and homes. Warm wishes, thoughts, and prayers for your safety and well being.

    nature destroying so many homes
    I watched the entire feed that Fire Captain Public Information Officer Tyler Townsend provided. I had no idea that the fire had spread that far and caused such

    1. Large propane tanks rarely “explode” in a wildland fire. If they are heated, the pressure can build up inside and automatic relief valves allow a controlled release of a portion of the gas. It can make a loud noise, and the released propane can ignite if there is an ignition source nearby. Propane, unlike natural gas, is heavier than air and can build up in a depression or flow downhill.

      1. That’s right, Bill, the larger propane tanks often vent and create a “plume fire”. When we hear a propane tank explosion on a fire it’s often the smaller (BBQ style) propane tanks with thinner metal walls that BLEVE because they are stored next to structures that generate tremendous rapid heating as they burn down.

        1. back in the 80s i was certified in HAZMAT and propane/natural gas along with other fuels,never saw a bleve in person,but some of the video they showed me made me very respectful of that type of fuel/fire,my engine partner used to tell me (still does at times) that i am an idiot due to the fact im not fearful enough…joke was on him…scared me…but as i said,we had nothing that bad here,but with the first transcontinental railroad and I80,both over donner,we had the potential.

          now back to your program

    1. Justin~

      As of this morning it had not. My dad lives off of Kelso Valley Rd too. I think it is called Valley View Estates. Anyway when I spoke to my dad this morning, he said the fire is actually farther from him now than it was last night. The only reason I could get through to him is that he had an old rotary dial phone that he dug out & plugged in. His power is out & he has no cell coverage.

      Hope this helps.

        1. Except my dad’s phone wasn’t working, he has a landline, it is a cordless that rings really loud & has enhanced hearing capability so he can hear when talking on the phone. He drug the old rotary phone out of the garage & plugged it in. Basically for him, because of his hearing, he can dial out, but if he isn’t literally right next to the phone, he can’t hear it.

    2. At 1500 Kern County Fire issued an evacuation order for Kelso Valley Road area up to the Piute Mountain Road.

  6. My Aunt Berta and Uncle Norm Vollmer live on Lynx
    My cousin David Vollmer lives on Cook Peak Road

    If anyone can confirm they are safe or if houses are okay it would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

    1. i am ron johnson a real close freind to dave, i have been calling for two days now with no answer ! and i have called daves mom as well she does not answer her phone.

      1. Ron, just heard they are all okay. David is at his house, he lost his deck, jacuzzi and one side of house is blistered from fire BUT he is safe. He doesnt have a phone as cell towers are down so I have had no communications with him. Aunt Berta and Uncle Norm are doing good and they are also home, no damage. Their house phone is working for incoming calls only so call them tomorrow. Thank you so much for responding, it has been super scary not knowing…

  7. Looking for my parents Carl & Carolyn Hawkins. They live on Wildwood. I was actually on the phone with my mom as they were being told to evacuate. That’s the last communication I had. They are not on the Red Cross registry. Any information would be greatly appreciated.

    1. Brad: Uncle Farris and family are hoping you have heard from your mom and dad. Please call us if you receive this message. The phone number is 661-589-5714. Praying for you all!

  8. Please can someone give an update?

    A friend that lives in Havilah just sent me a copy of an email she got around 3pm. I can’t reach my dad & he is very hard of hearing so would not have heard his phone ringing so would not have gotten the emergency call. He doesn’t have a computer & even if he did, his power is out.

    Here is the email. I already tried the Adult & Aging Services # listed & had to leave a message. I am sure they are swamped with calls.

    This is e-mail I got from Kern Emergency: Please click here to acknowledge receipt of this message ReadyKern Message Este es un mensaje de emergencia. Por favor llame a 2-1-1 para mas informacion en espanol. Gracias. /// If you live, work or are visiting an area affected by the Erskine Fire in Lake Isabella, please pay close attention to this message.

    This is a followup to earlier ReadyKern messages. The Erskine Fire has become a threat to the Kelso Valley community. The evacuation recommendation has been expanded to include the area of Highway 178 along Kelso Creek Road to Piute Mountain Road. A recommended evacuation means that the fire is an imminent threat and all persons in the evacuation area are strongly advised to leave and seek shelter away from the fire area.

    A recommended evacuation will likely be the last warning given. Your Kern County emergency authorities recommend that all persons in the area of Highway 178 along Kelso Creek Road to Piute Mountain Road evacuate as soon as possible.

    An emergency evacuation center is open at Kernville Elementary School, 13359 Sierra Way in Kernville. Animal Services is assisting with sheltering companion animals at the shelter site. In addition, another emergency evacuation center will soon open at St. Jude’s Church at 86 Nellie Dent Drive in Wofford Heights.

    Please note that the previous precautionary and recommended evacuations are still in effect. If you have physical limitations and require evacuation transportation assistance, please call the Adult and Aging Services hotline at 1-800-277-7866. If you have an emergency, call 911. If you have any questions about the content of this message, please contact Kern County Information and Referral Services at 2-1-1. Thank you. Kern County, CA

    1. Does he have neighbors nearby?
      I live in Havilah (not recommended to evacuate) but I’ve noticed people really look out for each other up here.
      If you have Facebook search #erskine fire for updates.

      1. Bonnie~

        I’ve been following the Facebook pages. Nothing new there. I only have his girlfriends number, no neighbors. But the power is out so likely most don’t have phone service (cordless phones require electricity). The only reason my dad has phone service is because he found an old rotary dial phone he had out in his garage. He can’t get incoming calls though because he can’t hear it ring, unless he is literally right next to it.

        Fortunately, he recently called his girlfriend, who in turn called me, and he is okay. Says he cannot see any flames from his house. So for now I am relieved, but know things can change in a heartbeat with these wildfires & the wind fueling them.

  9. Fire has headed south down Kelso Valley Rd towards Harris Grade Rd which is the first road south of Hwy 178 that takes you up in to the Piute Mtns. The dozers have worked to cut a line to try and hold the fire in the hills and isolate the structures. Last I heard they were to Harris Grade, and that Cortez Cyn and Bob Rabbit Cyn areas were being hit hard but structure engines were in place. Fire so far is west of Kelso Valley Rd. but still has wind on it. If you look at history, it is following the foot print of the Bodfish Fire of 1984. Up on the Piute Mtns. there are some small communities, Claraville being the major structure area, and lots of cabins dispersed throughout. Wind is supposed to abate tonight.

    1. Dozer Don…….do you know anything about the very small community on Kelso Valley Rd that is located immediately past the turn off to Bird Springs Pass. Just beyond Cortez Canyon. A lot of the properties are on/in the creek bed/wash. Have an old friend there that I’ve tried to reach. I remember the “old guys” in the community talking about the Bodfish Fire. I still remember the fire break that was bulldozed along the west side of the properties west of the creek.

      1. Pete, Have had real spotty coms with the folks I know out there working. Will try and see if I can get a update today. Was on the dozer that pushed that line from 178 to Harris grade way back then. Got a little exciting back then too. Should have lots of help today as all the engine strike teams should be in place by now.

        1. Don, thanks for the reply! Still haven’t been able to get ahold of my old friend. Obviously if they evacuated he wouldn’t be there to answer! Just talked my daughter that has been in contact with my Ex-wife. Last she heard 5 properties were destroyed in the little community I referenced above. She said they were the first 5 properties after you come around the corner passing the turn off to Bird Springs. My guess is there are about 15 developed properties/homes there alone the creek. What was our property is on the west side of the creek. Still owned by my Ex-wife. Within a few hundred feet of the line you cut in 84! My history there started in 1988. Did quite a bit developing the property for the next 18 years. Used to love it up there. Even though it’s not part of me anymore I would still hate to see it destroyed and the property of my old friend. Thanks again Don for the info. I’ll keep checking back to see if you update.

  10. Best place to get the most up to date information about the Erskine fire is here:


    It tells you right at the top how long ago it was updated.

  11. Re latest update asking what “Piute” is, I believe that refers to Piute Mountain Road (shown Google maps as County Road 501).

  12. The Inci-web report has an error in it. The PCT is closed from Walker Pass C.G. to Jawbone. There is no Walker Basin C.G. The Kelso Valley Rd at the southern end turns into Jawbone Canyon Rd towards the desert and in 2 places has routes up on to the Piute Mtns. The first is Harris Grade and is also called Piute Mtn Rd. The second is Gerringer Grade south of that location, and it to accesses Piute Mtns. They both meet in the Claraville area, and continue west with a route coming down into the east end of Walker Basin, and another called Saddle Springs Rd that comes out at the top of Hooper Hill south of Bodfish/ Lake Isabella and north of Havilah. The basic fire footprint to the south of Hwy 178 and along Kelso Valley Rd will mirror the 1984 Bodfish Fire, except with way more WUI to deal with. Fire is already to Cortez Cyn. and Bob Rabbit Cyn, which are just north of Harris Grade/ Piute Mtn Rd. I have not heard at this time of any fire past Kelso Valley Rd. to the east, and the smoke column showed a definite change today from east to south/south east which made it turn down Kelso Valley with those winds.

  13. With a significant draw-down of air tankers in the State what ever happened to the Forest Service getting into the air tanker business? Wasn’t there going to be a restored (MAFF) Coast Guard C 130 station again at MCC Sacramento? Are the folks in Colorado with the 747 waiting for the phone to ring? It does appear that the Kern County fire has an adequately number of aviation assets assigned. New fire on the Inyo N.F. has stripped out air tankers around Placerville, Lake Tahoe and Grass Valley areas.

  14. Does anyone know if the Longview neighborhood alright? It’s just east of James Station Market, where the fire department station is located?

  15. Does anyone know if the Tingle Ave. area off Kelso Valley road has burned? My folks used to own a nice house there and liked it there a lot. InciWeb’s maps leave a bit to be desired.

    1. At this time, Tingle Ave off Kelso Valley Rd is fine. The fire completely bypassed this neighborhood.

  16. Has anyone heard what happen to Jack and Marie Cook on East Road in Southlake? Are they ok? They are in their 80’s & 90’s and would have needed help to evacuate. Please call 661-873-0741 Pauline Davis; information is needed for their friend Doreen Pontius also in her late 80’s.

  17. Why, with all our technology, we can’t find a better way to put out fire? Even next week, a system of water tankers could be put together, with a pump-system, that would be much more effective than this (ridiculous) method of guys with shovels, helicopters with “water-balloon” droppings, and local fire-trucks (putting out a forest fire?) Sorry for the attitude, but I know many would agree with me that we need to do things differently–where is our “social imagination” (our ability to imagine on a large scale)?

    1. “Helicopters with water balloons”, you are not alone when it comes to frustration. The news rarely covers the months of what-is-next for the hundreds that lost everything. The best answer is don’t count on a fire or resource agency to protect your life and property or insurance to take you under their wing. If you live where there is a threat from wildfires go beyond what is required by county and state minimums. Clearing, automatic sprinkler systems, water tank or pool with pump and hose, neighbors that form a fire fighting alliance to watch each others back, quick access for fire trucks. Back to your original comment, “a better way” if the answer is found it will probably be presented first on this web site.

  18. KABC news is reporting that the Erskine fire was contained on July 12th and the homes destroyed total went up to 309.

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