Prescribed fire escapes in California State Park

San Felipe Fire
San Felipe Fire as seen from Mt. Laguna at 9:50 a.m. PT, May 5, 2013 (click to enlarge)

(UPDATE at 7:18 a.m. PT, May 26, 2013)

CAL FIRE is reporting the fire has burned 2,650 acres and is 90 percent contained. Resources assigned include 612 personnel, 50 engines, 23 hand crews, 6 dozers and 11 water tenders.


(UPDATE at 12:19 p.m. PT, May 25, 2012)

After overnight GPS mapping, the fire is now listed at 1,800 acres and 70 percent containment.


(UPDATE at 5:30 p.m. PT, May 24, 2013)

The incident commander of the San Felipe fire northeast of Julian, California is calling it 1,850 acres and 70 percent contained.


(UPDATE at 3:27 p.m. PT, May 24, 2013)

The images from the Mt. Laguna camera show that the San Felipe Fire is not putting up as much smoke as it was earlier today. CAL FIRE, in a 2:30 p.m. update, reports that it has grown to 1,800 acres and is still 60 percent contained.


(Originally published at 10:25 a.m. PT, May 24, 2013)

A prescribed fire in Anza Borrego Desert State Park 4 miles northeast of Julian, California got away from firefighters around noon on Thursday. A change in the wind direction is being blamed for the escape, now named  the San Felipe Fire, that as of Thursday evening had burned 1,500 acres and was 60 percent contained.

The Ramona Sentinel reported that CAL FIRE conducted the prescribed fire.

Map of San Felipe Fire Anza Borrego
Map showing the approximate location of San Felipe Fire, heat detected by a satellite at 10:35 p.m. PT, May 23, 2013 (click to enlarge)

As of 6:15 p.m. on Thursday the resources assigned to the San Felipe Fire included 644 personnel, 65 engines, 24 hand crews, 5 air tankers, 7 helicopters, 5 dozers, and 13 water tenders.

An animation of still photos taken from Mt. Laguna Thursday afternoon is available HERE. A window may pop up outside of your browser. It will take a while to load, and it may not work in the Chrome browser.

The latest still image is available HERE.

The fire is in the same general location as the Vallecito Lightning Complex of fires that burned more than 15,000 acres in August.

CAL FIRE chief pleads not guilty to vehicular manslaughter

A Chief with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection has pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence. On August 2, 2012, Timothy J. McClelland, the Chief of the San Bernardino unit, rear-ended a vehicle driven by Gregory Francis Kirwin, 48, of Banning. Mr. Kirwin died at the scene.

The California Highway Patrol report said Chief McClelland was using a cell phone when the pickup truck he was driving rear-ended the Ford Focus driven by Mr. Kirwin.


Thanks go out to Ken

California: man convicted of assaulting a firefighter

Tanker 910 dropping on Buck fire
Tanker 910 dropping on Buck fire. Still image from ABC7 video.

A California jury convicted a man from Sage, California (map) Thursday of assaulting a firefighter with a deadly weapon. The incident occurred on the Buck Fire which burned 2,681 acres south of Hemet August 14, 2012.

Gregory Lance Good Riverside County Sheriff photo
Gregory Lance Good Riverside County Sheriff photo

Gregory Lance Good, 60, became angry with a Riverside County Fire Department captain and was accused of driving his vehicle at the captain and running over his foot. Due to a lack of evidence he was acquitted of a charge of shooting at three people that he thought were trespassing on his property earlier in the year.

He could face a maximum sentence of nine years for the assault on the firefighter.

The Buck Fire was more eventful than your typical fire. An inmate firefighter died after he became ill on the fire. In addition, two CAL FIRE firefighters were injured when they were struck by retardant dropped from a CAL FIRE air tanker. They were transported to a hospital where they were treated and released.

Below is video of a DC-10, tanker 910, dropping on the Buck fire.