Sunday, August 30, 2009

LA Fires

I'm originally from Los Angeles and most of the family's still down there. And once again it's wildfire season and it's time to roll the dice and see which relatives are being evacuated or close to it... and sure enough, I have relatives near the Station Fire. And one thing that's new this time is Facebook - the high school aged kids are of course all comparing notes and pictures and leaving comments on each others walls about the fire progression and if they're packed for evacuation or not. I can just see a bit of it of course since it's not like I'm friending random high school students but they've all cross-friended each other and it's just one mass ball of communication.

You would think a lot of it would be happening on Twitter but my understanding is it never really caught on with the younger crowd. Still, the old folks (anybody over 25) seem to be using #Station. Interesting stuff - little stuff like the newspaper delivery people delivered to the evacuated area. Now that's service.

Update: Seems like my relatives lucked out - things are mostly burnt out in their area but it's pushed north and east. Two firefighters dead, 85,000 acres and 18 homes burnt, Mt Wilson's not looking good. Mt. Wilson not only has all of the antennas for all TV and radio in LA but a very cool observatory that has both historic scopes and ongoing multimillion dollar science projects. I've been up there - I'm not sure how handy the photos are but I know I took at least some. I was reading about crews clearing brush from the area - I wonder why that wasn't done regularly. Fires happen in the LA mountains all the time and that area was probably very overgrown. You would think LA would have a goat rental place similar to what we have here. It's not like you can do the whole forest but you would think if they cleared out the low stuff some reasonable distance from the towers and observatory that would have been a big help...


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