Oct. 26 wildfires and wind

The Silverado fire threatening Crean Lutheran’s high school softball field. Remeny Perez/Courtesy

In the early hours of Monday, Oct. 26, a massive brush fire broke out in Santiago Canyon. It has been named the Silverado Fire. ABC 7 reports in a news brief that the fire is now over 2,000 acres as firefighters are working diligently to contain the spread.

The Orange County Fire Authority is keeping residents up to date as mandatory evacuations are in place since the fire jumped the 241 toll road.

“Crean Lutheran is now closed due to the Santiago Fire,” Crean Lutheran High School said in a tweet. “Our students have been transported to the Orange County Great Park in Irvine.”

The high-paced winds are a major contributor to the fire’s containability. The Silverado Fire is now threatening residential areas in the city of Irvine as well as the city of Orange.

“I got home and started packing all my stuff,” said Remeny Perez, Crean Lutheran’s varsity softball coach. “I live one street over from the mandatory evacuation zone. There’s no way I’m risking it.”

The LA Times reported in an article that 60,000 residents have been evacuated from the Irvine area. Reports have been made that the power has gone out in Mission Viejo as well.

“I rushed home from work because my roommate can’t leave work,” said Cassandra Roush, former Saddleback College student. “It’s like I’m moving all over again but with super high winds.”

Irvine City council member, Anthony Kuo, is tweeting out vital information for Irvine residents. Relief centers are popping up around the city to aid those in need. An evacuation map has been posted.

“The air quality is really bad,” said David McAllister, a resident of Irvine. “I got the important things out of my house and I couldn’t stop coughing. I’m headed over to my grandparent’s house now.”

When packing an evacuation bag, it is important to remember medications as well as any important documents and personal belongings.

“We have had an evacuation plan for years but have never had to use it,” said Gail Tait, a resident of Tustin. “We are just far enough away but we have all of our birth certificates and passports in a locked safe and that’s really all we need.”

The Washington Post reported in an article that Orange County residents could possibly see up to 100 mph winds in the remainder of the day. Use caution when operating vehicles and get to safety.

Erin Sundberg Editor-At-Large in Alabama