Camp Pendleton and the surrounding area are in the midst of a severe wildfire. So far, the fire has burned 3,000 acres and has forced Camp Pendleton to issue mandatory evacuations.
Camp Pendleton has mandated evacuations for DeLuz Housing, Wounded Warrior Battalion, and Lake O’Neill Campground. Currently, the fire is burning at the northern part of the base, near Naval Weapons Station Detachment Fallbrook.
The fire started on Wednesday night, near Fallbrook. It quickly spread throughout the area, forcing 7,000 residents to evacuate. Cal Fire reported that the fire is 35 percent contained.
Camp Pendleton is no stranger to small-scale fires. Due to the inherent nature of the military training that takes place, fires often ignite. Fortunately, the base is outfitted with a very capable fire department.
The current conditions in southern California are making the area very vulnerable. The region is currently under a red flag warning. The weather has been warm and dry. These factors, when combined with the Santa Ana winds, create a conducive environment for the spread of fires.
It was reported that wind speeds reached up to 71 mph. Yet, according to the National Weather Service’s San Diego office, the winds have peaked out and will “slowly, but surely weaken,” helping to minimize the damage and allow Cal Fire to get the fire contained.
San Diego Gas and Electric and Southern California Edison have engaged the Public Safety Power Shut Off. This motion allows companies to pre-emptively turn off power to customers in order to prevent the ignition of wildfires during high-risk conditions.
So far, San Diego Gas and Electric has turned off power to 6,797 customers, with another 24,725 customers under a warning for a potential shut-off.
Southern California Edison has turned off power to 19,216 customers, with another 155,368 at risk.
As the fire burns on Camp Pendleton we wish that everyone stays safe during this holiday season.