FIRESafe MARIN News

Wildfire Safety Blog and News from FIRESafe MARIN.

Muir Fire Burns 58 Acres in Marin Wednesday

Photo courtesy of Marin IJ

In Marin, a 58 acre wildfire near the coast shut down Highway 1 Wednesday.  The "Muir Fire" was reported around 10:45 a.m. Wednesday, and burned on both sides of Shoreline Highway between Stinson Beach and Muir Beach. Firefighters efforts to control the fire were made difficult by strong winds and extremely low humidities associated with the day's extreme fire weather and Red Flag Warning.

FIRESafe MARIN points out that this fire, burning under critical fire weather with easterly "offshore" winds started in the most advantageous location possible in Marin: near highway one, the winds could only push this fire downhill, towards the ocean. In nearly any other location in Marin, a fire under these conditions might have burned significantly more acreage - and some locations in Marin had the potential for a catastrophic wildfire Wednesday due to high winds and low humidities.

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Kincade Fire Forces Thousands to Evacuate in Sonoma

kincade-fire-patch-photos-4___24120013766

The Kincade wildfire burning just northeast of Geyserville in north Sonoma County had scorched 21,900 acres and was 5% contained, according to a Friday morning estimate from Cal Fire.

A firefighting force of about 1,300 personnel was assigned to the Kincade fire (including at least 70 personnel, 10 engines, 2 fire crews, 1 bulldozer, and 1 water tender from Marin) which ignited during a windstorm Wednesday night in the remote geothermal energy production area of The Geysers in the Mayacamas Mountains. It burned southward into the edges of the Alexander Valley, destroying at least 49 structures.

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Wildfire Evacuation Preparedness Tips

Camp Fire Evacuation

When to Evacuate

Leave immediately if you receive a notification or alert to avoid being caught in fire, smoke or road congestion. Don’t wait to be ordered by authorities to leave if you are unsure, feel threatened, or lose power or communications. Law enforcement will direct the evacuation, and they will work to keep intersections open and moving, but their resources may be limited. Evacuating early (before evacuation is ordered) helps keep roads clear of congestion, and lets fire apparatus move more freely to do their job. If you are advised to leave, don’t hesitate!

  • In Marin, the fire Incident Commander (IC) will issue the evacuation order through the local law enforcement agency, and will determine the areas to be evacuated and escape routes to use (if there are options) depending upon the fire’s location, behavior, winds, terrain, etc.
  • Law enforcement agencies are responsible for enforcing an evacuation order. Follow their directions promptly.
  • You will be advised of potential evacuations as early as possible by Alert Marin.  YOU MUST REGISTER TO RECEIVE ALERTS.
  • You must take the initiative to stay informed and aware. Listen to your AM/FM radio  and TV for announcements from law enforcement and emergency personnel. Monitor social media and pay attention to your surroundings for changes in weather, smoke, embers, or other signs of danger.
    • Monitor FM 106.9, AM 740 (KCBS); AM 810 (KGO); FM 88.5 (KQED); FM 92.3, FM 90.5, FM 89.9 (KWMR, in West Marin). Follow @MarinSheriff, @MarinCountyFire, and your local agency social channels (Twitter first, Facebook, NextDoor second).
  • You may be directed to temporary assembly areas to await transfer to a safe location.

All evacuation instructions provided by officials should be followed immediately for your safety.

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Wildfire Evacuation Tips: Part Two

Cars evacuating wildfire

ALERTS AND NOTIFICATIONS

When a wildfire threatens your community, emergency managers will determine areas to be evacuated, and routes to use, depending upon the fire’s current and predicted location. Law enforcement officers are responsible for enforcing an evacuation order.  Follow their directions promptly.

If time allows, officials will attempt to advise you of the safest evacuation routes. You must take the initiative to keep informed and alert. Listen to your radio for updates on changing conditions. Monitor Alert Marin and Nixle for notifications and updates You may be directed to temporary assembly or refuge areas to await transfer to a safe location.

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Are You Registered for Alert MArin and Nixle?

Alert-Marin-Sign

REGISTER FOR ALERT MARIN

About Alert Marin

If you live, work, or go to school in Marin County and are 18 and over, you should register your cell phone or VoIP (voice over internet protocol) phone to receive emergency alerts sent by call, text, email, or smartphone application.

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It's Not Too Late to Prepare: 10 Things You Can Do Today

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A significant fire-weather event is predicted for this weekend, following Wednesday's Red Flag Warning that resulted in dozens of homes destroyed in Sonoma county.  This weekend's predicted weather has even more damaging potential, with the National Weather Service referring to the potential 80 MPH winds as ones of "historic" strength.

FIRESafe MARIN has these last minute tips for Marin residents to prepare for the weekend's fire potential (all of these can be done without power - thanks PG&E!):

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Marin Reaches 50 Firewise USA Site Milestone!

manor_hill_firewise

With 50 nationally recognized neighborhoods, Marin is the fastest growing county in the US for the Firewise USA program in 2019 and second in the nation for the number of recognized sites!  We've already added 20 new sites this year, and are working with 27 more neighborhoods to help them achieve this important recognition.  

At the October 11 FIRESafe MARIN meeting, we'll recognize the 9 newest sites with a presentation of a plaque.  Please accept our invitation to congratulate these new sites: 

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Final 2 "Living With Fire" Seminars of 2019!

Living With Fire in Marin - Seminars

The final two "Living With Fire" seminars of 2019 are scheduled. Register today if you haven't already attended this informative FREE 2 hour seminar.

Living With Fire is a wildfire preparedness education program developed by FIRESafe MARIN in conjunction with the Marin County Fire Chiefs Association, Marin County Fire Prevention Officers Association, and wildfire and home hardening experts.  This program covers:

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NWS Issues Red Flag Warning For North Bay Mountains

Red Flag Warning 10-5-19

October 5-6, 2019

Warning in effect for elevations above 1000 feet Saturday evening through 10AM Sunday morning.  

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Home Hardening Workshop for Building Professionals: November 19

2019-11-19Wildfire Home Hardening workshop for Contractors

Tuesday, November 19 FIRESafe MARIN will host two wildfire "home hardening" workshops at Embassy Suites in San Rafael.  

Register online TODAY!

1PM Workshop for Contractors, Architects, Designers, Handymen

  • 1PM-4PM Workshop and Seminar for Building Professionals
  • 4PM-5PM Manufacturer Showcase and Live Burn Demo

Recognizing that home-hardening through improved architectural design, ember and ignition resistant material selection, and retrofitting existing buildings are the most important factors in improving home survival during wildfires, FIRESafe MARIN has developed a seminar and training curriculum to introduce building professionals to these concepts.

Taught by experts in the field of building science, home hardening, and wildfire, this seminar is intended for building industry professionals to:

  • Train the contractor, handyman, architect, and owner/builder to recognize structural vulnerabilities to wildfires and embers;
  • Introduce ignition and ember resistant designs and materials;
  • Provide home-hardening and retrofitting resources;
  • Encourage building modifications to reduce the likelihood of structural ignitions during wildfires;
  • Develop a list of contractors to provide Marin homeowners with access to knowledgeable professionals;
  • Meet manufacturers and see ignition resistant and noncombustible building materials.

**Weather permitting, a live fire demonstration will be conducted at 5PM to demonstrate the differences between ordinary and fire-resistant construction. 

Homeowners are encouraged to attend the Live burn demonstration at 5PM, and stay for a 2 hour seminar focused on home hardening from the homeowner's perspective.

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