A power vault fire near a major Chevron natural gas pipeline junction Wednesday night triggered the evacuation of thousands in Bay Point and Pittsburg, officials said.
Around 4,000 people were forced to flee from 1,400 homes, officials said.
Assistant Fire Chief Terence Carey said a small vegetation fire erupted in the area Wednesday afternoon. Crews extinguished the fire without incident but were called back to the scene when they were alerted to the vault fire.
“There is an active fire in the vault,” Carey told reporters Thursday morning. “We are not sending our firefighters in there until we know it is safe.’
Officials said there was “no threat of explosion at this point.”
Chevron officials said they were contacted at around 8 p.m. Wednesday to notify them of the blaze.
KPIX-TV CBS 5 San Francisco
The cities of El Cajon, La Mesa and Lemon Grove Wednesday named a firefighting veteran of more than three decades as the fire chief of the jointly-managed Heartland Fire and Rescue.
Steve Swaney will replace Colin Stowell as Heartland’s fire chief, effective Oct. 20, according to the city managers from El Cajon, La Mesa and Lemon Grove.
Stowell was sworn in as San Diego’s fire-rescue chief in August after serving as Heartland’s fire chief for two years.
Swaney has worked with the City of El Cajon, and subsequently Heartland Fire and Rescue, since 1985. Swaney most recently served as a Heartland division chief, overseeing day-to-day operations of fire stations across the three cities. He has also served as fire chief for the Julian Cuyamaca Fire Protection District and is a Federal Emergency Management Agency- certified canine evaluator.
KUSI-TV San Diego
Cal Fire tells Action News Now that the number of firefighters killed by suicide is higher than those killed in the line of duty. An exact number in Butte County is to be determined, as there remains a stigma against PTSD and suicide.
Extended hours and exposure to constant death and destruction can hurt mental wellness.
"What happens with first responders generally is they are taught at the beginning to get through it and put emotions aside," says Katy Luallan, a therapist for firefighters. "As they experience trauma, going to accidents, medical calls, and fires, those things start to add up."
Nationwide, first responder suicides, in general, are on the rise. 140 police officers took their own lives in 2017.
KHSL-TV CBS 12 Action News Now
A new foundation has been set-up in honor of Jeremy Stoke, the Redding firefighter killed on July 26 while fighting the Carr Fire.
The Jeremy Stoke Legacy Fire Foundation was created by several Redding firefighters, and Jeremy's wife, as a way to carry on his legacy and create a foundation for the future of public safety families.
Through the foundation, Redding firefighters hope to be able to provide scholarships to students pursuing a career in public safety and help public safety families in need.
Sam Hunt, a captain with the Redding Fire Department and one of the firefighters involved in creating the foundation, said being part of something like this means a lot after working closely with Jeremy for many years.
“It means a lot to me. Me and Jeremy started working together back in ’01. This is a way for me to remember him and be a part of what Jeremy was all about. Loud boisterous, just Jeremy," said Hunt.
KRCR-TV ABC 7 & KCVU-TV Fox 20
Two Moraga-Orinda Fire District aides acted without authorization or approval by looking up the addresses of candidates running for seats on the district board and conducting exterior hazard abatement inspections on their property. On Sept. 26, at the Orinda home owned by Division 4 independent candidate Lucy Talbot, the aides posted a 30-day notice to abate fire hazards, which required a large-scale removal of trees.
"I was flabbergasted," Talbot said. "It would have required thousands of dollars of expense. As a candidate, I want to be a model citizen, so I reached out to other board members and took it to the chief."
Fire Chief Dave Winnacker went to Talbot's house the next day and apologized to her for the actions of his employees. Talbot said the chief did a walk-through of her property and told Talbot that her home was absent any major violations.
PHOTO - The Oceanside Fire Department set a record with 17 babies born to wives of firefighters from July 2017 to July 2018.
"This is the most babies at one time we've ever had," said Fire Captain Tim Scott of the Oceanside Fire Department on Wednesday.
Scott said after a different fire department posted about the number of babies born to them that year, Oceanside decided to count their numbers.
The 17 babies are from 17 mothers, with no twins in the mix. The families are thrilled their children will be able to grow up together. Oceanside Fire Department has 8 stations. When the department is fully staffed, there are about 100 members.
KNSD-TV NBC San Diego