Putting out (information about) the fires

Re: The Station Fire. Fire update 6:05 am, 2 Sept. 2009: Chief Mike Bryant from the fire department says: If the fire has a personality, the descriptor for today is (once again) “cranky.” The west end of the fire is above Little Tujunga. The east end of the fire is west of Chilao. $21 million has been spent fighting the fire, which has now covered 150,000 acres.

Mt. Wilson update: It’s in good shape. Firefighters were able to stay there overnight. Class A foam and retardant has been deposited in the area, along with the 7,500 gallons of gel that was dropped yesterday.

Evacuation update: That information comes from the LA Sheriff. Bryant didn’t have the latest.

Getting accurate information out to people about the fires hasn’t been the smoothest, or so I hear from Altadenablog (who has done a wonderful job). The LA Times has been doing a great job, but Sparks and Butterflies bemoans local television coverage and says she’s gotten the best and most accurate information via Facebook.

On the local blogging front: Frazgo did a round up of locals over at Los Angeles Metblogs (which has some good coverage overall). Deb over at Altadena Above It All has several info posts and some great photos. Karin has been blogging photos and running descriptions of what she’s seeing from her vantage point in Altadena—here’s a sample. Petrea at Pasadena Daily Photo posted a fire photo round-up (but didn’t mention my post—no hard feelings, I promise!).

Except for Frazgo, the bloggers mentioned above aren’t particularly active on Facebook, so those of you watching the fire via Facebook may have missed them. And you non-FB folks may have missed some good stuff too.

Straddling the Facebook vs Rest of Interwebs is the Pasadena PIO, who is keeping the City of Pasadena’s web site updated (along with her blog). She has also been using Facebook to get info out to local residents.

So in the Venn diagram of life, I offer my Facebook fire coverage round up, with thanks to all who have posted information there:

KChristieH has done several fire-related post with great photos and info. She points us to the LA Times’ updated interactive map of the fires. She also pointed us to InciWeb and to this site with many LA County area emergency scanners.

From Susan: She has a thing for time lapse movies of the fire. A link to the Mount Wilson Tower Cam (come back soon!). The Firefigher Blog. A list of fire stations accepting food and water donations. Gargantuan image of the fire area from space courtesy of NASA.

From Monica Hubbard: A link to Mount Wilson Observatory.

From Eye Level Pasadena: A link to CBS News on Ustream (As I watch this live feed, I have the window open. It’s like smell-o-vision!) Jill also links to Kolby Kirk’s map of the fires.

So thanks to people posting info on Facebook, I feel like I’ve learned a lot about the primary sources of information in a disaster like this. Perhaps the Pasadena PIO will hire me…

Photo from Saturday, 29 August 2009, 11:00 pm. Taken from just south of Woodbury between Lincoln and Fair Oaks. I know, I know—I need a tripod.

fire 8 29 09 3

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3 Responses to “Putting out (information about) the fires”

  1. Christina Says:

    Isn’t it wonderful what a great digital community we have? I love that we were able to share information, images, and support with each other all so quickly and powerfully.

  2. Angel Bec Says:

    Thank God for Altadenablog. I have been reading it every other hour and it has provided the most clear and comprehensive information yet. I cannot wait for the smoke to clear and to be able to walk around the Rose Bowl again in the mornings or hike up to the top of Lake. It’s funny how you take those little things for granted until you cannot do them anymore.

    And THANK GOD for the fire fighters. No amount of money in the world can ever repay you for your hard work!

  3. Larry Marinas Says:

    As an Information Officer assigned to the Station Fire I appreciate the positive feedback for information posted on Facebook. UtilizIng social media is new for incident staff and is being closely watched by Agency leadership to evaluate it’s effectiveness. You may also follow the fire on Twitter at Angeles NF.

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