Wednesday, Oct 24, 2007
The park was closed yesterday due to extreme fire danger and will remain closed through Thursday, October 25th. Naval Base Point Loma, in coordination with the National Park Service, closed access to the entire Point Loma Peninsula due to fire danger, with the exception of the Rosecrans National Cemetery.
Several park staff have prepared for evacuation from their homes or have already been evacuated. Due to the fires in other areas of San Diego County, there are very few fire suppression resources available to the park if an emergency breaks out.
âOur first priority is to ensure the safety of the publicâ, said Tom Workman, superintendent of Cabrillo National Monument. âThe risk of someone being trapped by a wildland fire or accidentally starting one during this exceptionally dangerous weather is too high, and has forced us to act with caution.â
The National Weather Service yesterday extended a red flag advisory until 3 p.m. today due to low relative humidity, high winds, and warm temperatures. The relative humidity today reached a low of 13% and wind gusts increased to 28 mph by late yesterday afternoon.
Most San Diego County agencies, schools, and businesses have closed down due to the fires in order to allow people to evacuate their homes, remain indoors due to extremely poor air quality, and to facilitate emergency response for fire suppression efforts.
The Harris and Witch Creek Fires in San Diego County have combined to burn more than 200,000 acres, sending huge plumes of burnt ashes into the air over the entire county. Both fires were 5% or less contained at the time of yesterdayâs report. More home evacuations are imminent, adding to the over 500,000 people who have already evacuated from their homes in San Diego County.
The park closure includes all parking lots, trailheads and trails, the Old Point Loma Lighthouse, Assistant Keepers Quarters, army radio station, visitor center, tidepools, Bayside Trail and all buildings. Law enforcement personnel are working extended hours patrolling Cabrillo National Monument.