Monday, July 7, 2008

It's "NOT" over yet, We're still in the Woods!

History has shown that Big Sur Folk, nearly ALWAYS stay to defend their properties.
They know the land better than their rescuers. They know the back trails and that they can count on their neighbors.

But IT"S NOT OVER YET!!! The first fire of the summer has taught us all.
But will you remember?

There could be more fires this summer. We hope not but all of us should be prepared.
Some of the things that you might want to consider for the future.
Here are some of the suggestions that you in the Big Sur Community have already mentioned:
1. Storing of canned foods if you have to hunker down on your property.
2. Hiring trained personnel who can get into your property to be there with you before there is a hard road closure.
3. Establish protocol for getting supplies in and out for home and business owners. Convoys? Escorted personnel who drop off deliveries once a day. After all if the SPCA is allowed to go in to rescue some chickens, why can't they also drop off some food and other supplies?
4. Penny Verigee is saying that the Red Cross will come into the Grange and teach Distaster Training so that more Big Sur folk can more effectively stay behind.
5. Cut paths to and from your neighbors so that you can support each other more effectively.
6. Get wireless internet cards for your computers. And create an email list of Big Surians, sort of how PelicanNetwork's surfire email list works.
7. Make sure you have ONE PERSON who is always documenting and photographing things...recording names of responders.
8. Always keep your propane and diesel for generators topped off. Water tanks too.
Keep extra gasoline for your chain saws.
9. Make sure you do things to protect your eyes, throat, and lungs from smoke. Somehow create a smoke free area within your area...check to see if you can get oxygen to help with anyone affected by the smoke.
10. Have plastic containers ready for evacuation. Keep inventory list. Have a grab and go box with all important documents.
11. Fire gel lasts from 3 to 5 years if you shake it up twice per year. Have it on hand. FEMA might not be able to get to your home in time. Learn how to gel your home.
12. Keep your homes defendable. Clear Clear Clear. Have a firefighter come to your home to make suggestions on making your home defendable. Keep tin foil available to cover plastic windows and skylights. Make sure you have ladders.
Okay...we are now waiting for more of your comments...and suggestions.


Anonymous said...

I have been speaking with people on Apple Pie, Clear Ridge, Pfieffer Ridge and near Ripplewood almost eery day for the past five days. Spirits are good and some friends took a ride south in an undisclosed vehicle to aid a southcoaster who was without water. Apple Pie seemed more like a war zone then a firefighting scene the last few days. I'm sure that this is old news to most of you by now, however you should know that a local red head had his donated fire equipment stripped from him while handcuffed on the ground and threatened he could be arrested for impersonating a firefighter. This "redhead" is a close friend of mine and was very emotional at the time of our conversation on saturday. He went on to say the deputies confiscated his gear and left him to fight the fire in a t-shirt and pants. They took his, helmet, nomex hood(fire retardant hoods worn by firefighters around the world) and pants.

there seems to be a bit of traveling from neighbor to neighbor though and all reports I have received are positive since then.

To Whom it may concern, I would love to volunteer to drive down supplies to my friends and co-workers who so desperately need them. My love and thoughts go out to all remaining in the Sur.....

and I am finding it difficult to post blogs here...-mike

Anonymous said...

I know you all are stressed in your situation, but one day you might understand and respect our caretakers who have a lot of responsibility to care for the whole community. Let them do their jobs so we can all be safer.

Anonymous said...

It's anarchy when residents start fires that could get out-of-control and hurt fire fighters or damage other people's properties. This is a bad idea that could be used by some selfish wackos out there who think only of themselves and may not have the same luck the Apple Pie brothers had. Let's have more respect for the fire fighters and sheriff department for doing their professional jobs.

Anonymous said...

Anarchy? and Wackos? If you knew these people personally, then you wouldn't be calling them WACKO's or Anarchists. Many of The homes that are still standing...were protected by homeowners. For over 40 yrs homeowners have stayed on their properties protecting it. If the SPCA can go in on a daily basis to rescue animals which we are glad they can do then why can't officials have one local designated to account for people who are there and bring them supplies daily? None of the homeowners want to "get in the way" of firefighters but they do have a right to protect and defend their homes.

Anonymous said...

Actually, some people who know them do call them whacko's and anarchists (1/2 :-), but that's a different debate.

This is a difficult issue that has split Americans since their independence. Defense of property is paramount in our culture. And the guys on Apple Pie certainly are experienced at defending their property from fire by themselves. The biggest concern is the lack of coordination with other fire fighteres. If you don't know where everyone is, you could be setting their cremation as well as a backfire. It happens even with practiced teams in communication with each other.

$0.02 worth...

Anonymous said...

I wasn't calling the Apple Pie guys whacko anarchists, but I'm glad we got the pot stirred so we can have some real debate.

Anonymous said...

I would very much like to see ALL fire breaks and fire roads that have been cleared now, wether old and re-cleared, or newly constructed, kept clear PERMANENTLY! blade them all off, at least once or twice a year, FOREVER!!

Anonymous said...

In response to the post about respect for the firefighters and sheriff's dept. I personally have an extreme respect for the firefighters, but the sheriff's dept. can just crawl in hole and pull the hole in behind them!

Anonymous said...

Ok..the title of this category is "It's not over yet", and I hope we can keep THAT subject going here, as that's the most important topic at this to recover!!

The economic impact of this fire is humongous, and isn't over yet...the fire is still burning, the weather is changing, and the road is still closed to non-residents...and could be closed again to residents if the fire flares up.

I want to suggest to any afficionado of Big Sur out there: if you have some money, and have a favorite restaurant, family, place, area, whatever in Big Sur, DONATE...NOW! And do so directly, so the help goes immediately and directly to the need. Receiving Federal & local money will take time (lots-a paperwork) and will not be enough -no matter what amount it is- to get Big Sur back on track quickly.

And a last reminder: Esalen, Lucia, and other points south have been closed too, and their section of highway is still on 'hard' closure as far as I know this am: JPB to Lucia. Let's not forget them!

Time to leave the 'politiking' to the polititions, and get down and HELP where and with what is needed!

On that note, I turn OFF my computer, and get to work!!