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San Diego Officials Warn Of Fire Danger Under Santa Ana Conditions

A fire scorched palm tree stump lies in an urban canyon near Talmadge as a re...

Photo by Erik Anderson

Above: A fire scorched palm tree stump lies in an urban canyon near Talmadge as a reminder of the fire that roared through here a week before this picture was taken on Oct. 21, 2019.

Warmer than usual weather is heightening awareness about the threat of wildfires in the region.

Last week’s Fairmont Fire, which flared up in an overgrown canyon near Talmadge, was a stark reminder of the danger.

Listen to this story by Erik Anderson.

Fire officials said the blaze was likely sparked in a homeless encampment.

Despite tense moments, officials said no homes were touched by the flames. And city officials are asking the community to help spot fires or situations that could lead to a fire.

“If you see something suspicious, please let the police department know right away,” San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer said. “If you see an encampment. Use the Get It Done app. So we can send workers out to get folks help. To get them services. And to get them out of an unsafe, dangerous and unclear environment in our canyons.”

RELATED: Hot, Dry Weather Plus Santa Ana Conditions In East County Equal Elevated Fire Danger

Reported by Erik Anderson , Video by Nicholas Mcvicker

San Diego Fire-Rescue Chief Colin Stowell said city residents need to pay attention, especially if they live close to a canyon with lots of fuel.

Quick action can help save property and lives.

“We’ve got 46,000 properties that run up against canyons or open space that are threatened by that, especially for the fire danger,” Stowell said. “And so we actively work with the residents to make sure they’re aware of the risk and do their part because we cannot do it alone. We can’t do it with just a response and we certainly don’t have the resources for the brush management side.”

The San Diego region has a history of damaging wildfires this time of year.

One of the county’s most damaging wildfires, the Witch Fire, started on Oct. 21, 2007.

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Aired: October 22, 2019 | Transcript

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Photo of Erik Anderson

Erik Anderson
Environment Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksI focus on the environment and all the implications that a changing or challenging environment has for life in Southern California. That includes climate change, endangered species, habitat, urbanization, pollution and many other topics.

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