Lessons Learned from the San Diego, California Wildfire Essay

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In making the decisions to protect people’s lives from hazards and disasters, evacuations sometimes become necessary. Of course early in the reaction to the incident, or the response phase, this may become a decision for local and state emergency managers. The San Diego, California wildfire which occurred in October 2007 caused a large scale evacuation. This essay is an analysis, and identification of lessons learned from the evacuation incident. As well a plan of personal recommendations and improvements will be made based on information covered in the National Housing strategy, and Robert Stafford Act. Wildfires started as an annual and seasonal occurrence in the south western region of California since the early 1930’s in part …show more content…

The tactical firefighting operation, mass notification process, evacuation plans and emergency operations command and control were readied by noon of 21 October, after timing estimates of the rapidly growing fires showed them fast approaching city limits. Starting on October 21st at 1030 hours, the Sheriff’s Department Operations Center (DOC) was activated, and reverse 911 calls were started to begin evacuations. On the 21st, eight reverse 911 calls were made, notifying 20,992 residences to evacuate. On the 22nd, 23 reverse 911 calls were made, notifying 210,156 residences to evacuate. On the 23rd, 14 reverse 911 calls were made, notifying 47,992 residences to evacuate. Finally on the 24th, one reverse 911 call was activated, notifying 900 residences to evacuate (SD County, 2008). Due to the speed of the fires, the evacuation declarations required the activation of numerous shelters; the shelters numbered 45, and were located in schools, community centers, civic centers. Two of them were considered mega shelters located at Qualcomm Stadium and the Del Mar Fairgrounds, which was also one of the five animal shelters, which itself sheltered, and cared for 2,000 horses for five days. The United States Ship, (USS Mercy) was requested and stationed off the coast so that two local hospitals in the area could evacuate patients. The manpower, and resource response for this incident was one that was not

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