Firefighter Josh Balboa monitors the Harris fire in southern San Diego County. Michael Robinson Chavez / Los Angeles Times
Camp Pendleton fire 100% contained, Marines resume training
The Horno fire, which burned more than 21,000 acres on Camp Pendleton, is 100% contained, and training for Marines preparing to deploy to Iraq will resume Monday, Marine Corps officials said today.
Also, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials announced that the Tecate port of entry would reopen at 5 a.m. Monday for passenger vehicles and pedestrians. Trucks are still being diverted to the Otay Mesa or Calexico ports.
NFL, Chargers owners donate $1.25M to fire relief fund
The National Football League is donating $250,000 to the Chargers Fire Relief Fund, and the Spanos family, owners of the San Diego Chargers, is donating $1 million.
The Chargers are collecting donations from fans entering Qualcomm Stadium today for the Chargers-Houston Texans game. Donations go directly to the Salvation Army and families of injured firefighters.
Also, California National Guard sergeants major have established a fund to help Guardsmen and their families hurt by the fires: www.smaofcalifornia.org. Several Guardsmen have had their homes destroyed or damaged, officials said.
The deadly Harris fire in San Diego County has burned 90,750 acres and is 65% contained, with full containment expected Wednesday and full control by Nov. 4. The blaze has destroyed 206 homes and damaged 250 homes and 247 outbuildings.
Five people have died as a result of the fire, and 32 firefighters and 21 civilians have been injured. Today, 2,544 firefighters will work the blaze, which has cost $9.7 million to fight. The cause remains under investigation.
The Poomacha fire, the only one still burning in San Diego County, threatens 500 homes. The blaze has burned through 49,150 acres and is 50% contained, fire authorities said. Full containment is expected by Wednesday.
So far it has destroyed 136 homes and 19 outbuildings and injured 18 firefighters. Today 2,123 firefighters worked the blaze, which has cost $5.2 million to fight.
The fire started in a home, officials said. The blaze is currently burning along the Santa Margarita drainage area. Hot spots remain in the Agua Tibia Wilderness and at the top of Mt. Palomar, where some evacuations continue in effect.
The Rice fire, which has burned through 9,000 acres, was declared 100% contained this morning, with firefighters aiming for full control by Nov. 5, according to Audrey Hagen, a spokeswoman for Cal-Fire.
The blaze in San Diego County, caused by a spark from power lines, has destroyed 205 homes, two businesses and 40 outbuildings. It has injured five firefighters.
Today about 850 firefighters continued to work the blaze doing mop-up. "They'll be checking for hot spots, and they won't declare it fully out until the 5th, or sooner," Hagen said. The fire has cost nearly $5 million to fight.
Fire investigators Saturday appealed to the public for information about a 44-year-old Los Angeles man arrested Wednesday for allegedly impersonating a firefighter at the Rice fire in Fallbrook.
William Reed Brock, on probation for a drug offense, was arrested while driving a Ford pickup with personalized firefighter license plates and a bed full of fire equipment and clothing.
Investigators said that "if you have seen Brock at any wildfires, or in fire camps or at fire stations," you should contact sheriff's detective Clayton Lisk at (760) 451-3110 or Cal-Fire investigator Gary Eidsmore, (800) 468-4408 or the Cal-Fire Arson Tip Line, (800) 468-4408.
Brock allegedly told deputies he was a member of the Morongo Fire Department, but that information proved false. He is not considered a suspect in any of the fires, Lisk said.
Brock is 6-foot, 160 pounds, balding with blond hair and a ponytail.
NFL union says it's OK to play in San Diego on Sunday
National Football League Players Assn. spokesman Carl Francis said today that union leadership was confident that Sunday's game between the San Diego Chargers and Houston Texans could be played at Qualcomm Stadium without endangering player health or safety.
"We've been in communication with the NFL, and we feel very confident with the information that the San Diego mayor and others have given to the league," Francis said. "We are confident that the game can be played in San Diego on Sunday. We're just following the health guidelines and safety plans in place. We're working closely with the NFL.”
Although the NFL will play its game Sunday, most of the county's organized outdoor athletic activity ground to a halt earlier in the week. The San Diego Unified School District canceled all athletic activity during the weekend. San Diego State University postponed several athletic events, including a Saturday football game against Brigham Young University at Qualcomm. That game has been rescheduled at the stadium for Dec. 1.
San Diego State also postponed men's and women's soccer matches, a cross-country meet and swimming, diving and volleyball competitions. The university plans to reschedule the events or move them to alternative locations.