Fire Grips Santa Clarita: Day Two
Read up to date information on the fires burning in Santa Clarita, click here
for Tuesday's article.
Updated: Monday, October 23rd, 2007 at 11:59 p.m.,
All evacuations EAST of the I-5 have been downgraded and are no longer mandatory. The City is reporting that residents in all areas evacuated EAST of the I-5 freeway can return to their homes, although proper identification will be required to enter the neighborhoods. These areas include Whites Canyon, upper Bouquet, Plum Canyon and Canyon Country. Due to the possibility that the fire may change, residents are urged to stay on alert.
IMPORTANT: Mandatory evacuations are still in place for those WEST of the I-5, including Hillcrest and Hasley Canyon Road.
As of 1:15 p.m., North of Hasley to the Old Road (Hillcrest Area) Mandatory Evacuation.
KHTS has learned that LARC Ranch was being evacuated at 12:30pm. Also on Bouquet Canyon Road, was Heads Up Therapy on Horseback. The not-for-profit was caught in the blaze, and their volunteers had to drive through the fire to exit safely. One volunteer had to make an emergency exit from the area and was burned on his hands and face. He has just come out of surgery and is doing well. All of the horses managed to survive the fire after being led into an open arena clear of brush. Only one horse was injured, but will make a full recovery.
San Francisquito, has re-opened to residents only in both directions.
Val Verde and Piru are also being evacuated as a result of the Castaic Fire.
Record setting numbers of evacuations are plaguing Santa Clarita at this time.
Canyon Country Fire now at 35,500+ acres, now 25% contained. 680 fire personnel are in place and air drops have resumed. About 3,800 structures are threatened, with 32 structures destroyed (15 homes, 17 outbuildings), 40 vehicles lost, and 900 homes without power. Currently, structure protection is in place for many homes, mostly in the Saugus area off of Plum Canyon Rd. The fire, as of 8:21 p.m., is headed southwest towards Santa Clarita.
Castaic Fire now at 29,000 acres, now 10% contained but no new evacuations have been ordered. And while no injuries have been reported, according to the LA County Forestry Department, 150 structures are threatened and a mobile home has been destroyed. Existing evacuations are still in place. Please read below for more details.
Congressman Buck McKeon is currently en route to visit the fire-torn communities of California and the 25th Congressional district. McKeon was expected to arrive at the Fire Command Headquarters at 3:00 p.m. PDT. Once he arrives, he will be briefed by the Incident Commander on containment and recovery efforts.
“Two of the 12 massive fires moving across the state are in our district,” stated McKeon. “There is one in the Santa Clarita area and one around Castaic, Val Verde, and Hasley Canyon. I’ve been in touch with both the LA County Fire Department handling Santa Clarita and the U.S. Angeles National Forest Service, which has command over the Castaic fire.”
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger directed the California National Guard (CNG) to make 1500 guardsmen available to support the firefighting efforts in Southern California . The 1500 guardsmen, including 200 troops currently patrolling the California/Mexico border, will be deployed at the direction of the Governor's Office of Emergency Services (OES) to areas where they can have the greatest impact.
"It is a tragic time for California. I saw the tremendous devastation caused by these fires first hand today and I want to commend all of the brave firefighters that have been battling the blazes around our state. They have done an extraordinary job," said Governor Schwarzenegger. "We have the best-trained, the best-equipped and the most experienced firefighters in the world and I am committed to making all of the state's resources available to them to get these fires under control. That is why I have declared a state of emergency and directed the National Guard to support the firefighters in Southern California."
"I urge everyone to follow the directions and evacuation orders issued by the emergency personnel."
Governor Schwarzenegger has requested four CNG helicopters through OES to support the firefighting efforts of numerous Southern California wildfires. The four aircraft are currently on stand-by at Mather Air Field (1 Firehawk) and Los Alamitos Joint Forces Training Base (3 UH-60 Blackhawks). The UH-60 Blackhawk and the Firehawk are capable of fire suppression missions as well as personnel transport in and out of dangerous and hard to reach locations.
The CNG is experienced in executing firefighting response missions and recently conducted their annual 3-day
large-scale interagency wildfire training exercise near Fresno in May with CAL FIRE and the USDA Forest Service.
Governor Schwarzenegger last night proclaimed a State of Emergency in the counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino , San Diego, Santa Barbara and Ventura due to more than eleven major wildfires to make more resources available to fight the fires.
You can read about Monday's fire activities also by clicking here.
Two major fires are still raging in Santa Clarita. One is located in Castaic, the other in Canyon Country. Several evacuations are in place for residents close to the front line of the fires.
It is required to evacuate all homes North of Vasquez on Bouquet Canyon Road & North of San Franciscito Canyon Road.
In Castaic, residents WEST of Hasley Canyon Road and Del Valle are under a mandatory evacuation. Voluntary evacuations are recommended for areas East of Hasley Canyon and Del Valle.
In Stevenson Ranch, all residents on Mallory Drive to Waycott Way are under a mandatory evacuation.
Governor Schwarzenegger last night proclaimed a State of Emergency in the counties of Los Angeles , OrangeRiverside , San Bernardino , San Diego , Santa Barbara , and Ventura due to more than eleven major wildfires. Throughout the region, more than 30,000 acres have already burned, and more areas are threatened. The wildfires have caused the loss of human life and serious injuries. They have burned a number of homes, businesses and other structures. Residents have been evacuated in dangerous areas.
Current Road Closures
California Highway Patrol - Newhall Office - Closures:
Sierra Highway and Aqua Dulce
Sierra Highway at Davenport
Sierra Highway to Sand Canyon Road- open to residents only
Bouquet Canyon and Spunky Canyon
Bouquet Canyon and Vasquez Canyon
Bouquet Canyon and David Way
Seco Canyon at Copperhill Drive
Seco Canyon at Tamarack
Haskell Canyon at Copperhill Drive
Tamarack at Copperhill Drive
Hasley Canyon Road at Commerce Center
Hasley Canyon Road at Del Valle
SR-126 at Chiquito Canyon Road
Valencia Boulevard WEST of The Old Road
Saugus High School
21900 West Centurion Way
to Saugus High, call 661-295-6396
Golden Valley High School
27051 Robert C. Lee Parkway.
Quartz Hill High School
6040 West Avenue 'L'
Also, the congregation of the Church of Jesus Christ and Latter Day Saints on the corner of McBean Parkway and Rockwell Canyon Road, is currently offering food to evacuees.
Known School Closures for Tuesday, October 23rd:
Pinecrest Schools- Valencia and Canyon Country
College of the Canyons-both Valencia and Canyon Country campus'
Newhall Elementry School District
Saugus Union School District
Sulphur Springs School District
Castaic School District
Hart School District
Santa Clarita Christian School
His Little Lambs Preschool
Trinity Classical Academy
Congregation Beth Shalom Preschool
Bethlehem Lutheran Preschool
Legacy Christian Academy
Sunshine Preschools and After-Schools-including Valencia, Wiley Canyon, FairOaks, and Pinetree
Our Lady of Perpetual Help School
Santa Clarita Adult Day Health Care
St. Stephen's Preschool
Kindercare (Canyon Country)
Keep tuned into AM 1220 or hometownstation.com for updates as we continue with round the clock coverage.
For FEMA online information, visit http://www.fema.gov/areyouready/fire.shtm
The Santa Clarita chapter of the American Red Cross is located at 23838 Valencia Blvd.
To read yesterday's story, click here .