2003 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 31 Oct 2003 19:26:30 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Fort Ord fire report issued
Fort Ord fire report issued
Blaze was out-of-control earlier than previously thought
By Sukhjit Purewal, spurewal@montereyherald.com
Posted on Fri, Oct. 31, 2003

A preliminary report on last week's Fort Ord prescribed burn reveals it
spiraled out of control shortly after ignition, earlier that authorities
had previously thought.

The report released Thursday indicates the fire on former Army ranges 43
through 48 along Eucalyptus Road had escaped its western boundary along
Evolution Road by 9:45 or 9:50 a.m., about a half hour after the fire
was ignited by Fire Stop crews by air. Later the blaze outran its
southern boundary of Broadway Avenue.

Originally the Army and Fire Stop had reported the fire had gone out of
control about 11 a.m. The latest information seemingly supports the
Army's view that the heavy smoke that dusted the Monterey Peninsula was
in large part caused by the unexpected size of the fire and was not
entirely the fault of weather conditions at the time of ignition.

Also Thursday, Army officials led media tours of the burn area to show
how thoroughly littered it was with unexploded ordnance, including
numerous bazooka rounds. The Army conducted the controversial burn to
remove vegetation so crews can remove the explosives.

The preliminary report was prepared by Fire Stop, the Granite Bay-based
company hired to carry out the burn. A burn that was supposed to clear
towering brush from 490 acres scorched 1,470 acres, running some 1.35
miles before finally dying out earlier this week.

"It is regrettable that it escaped," said Col. Jeff Cairns of the
Presidio of Monterey. "We need to learn the lessons from the burn and
share those lessons. It is important."

This article can be viewed at:

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