I’ve been blogging fires for about 4 years now and I can’t say I have ever felt such sadness as I do today. Channel 4 news in L.A. just reported that they estimate 500 of the 600 homes in the Oak Ridge Mobile Home community have burned.
Earlier this morning firefighters were withdrawn from the park for their own safety. Forty to seventy mile per hour winds threatened to pin firefighters down in the narrow roads of the mobile home park.
This was a well established community, mostly double wide homes that ranged between $90,000 and $180,000. Working class and retired folks living together will now be confronted with rebuilding or moving to new locations.
I hope private insurance company representatives get to these folks as soon as possible with relocation and A.L.E. (additional living expenses) funds in hand. Grief counselors should be brought in today to help residents cope. I suggest hotel chains send representatives to the evacuation shelters with open arms.
This is a monumental disaster that requires direct action by the city, volunteer agencies and private business.
The images projected on local LA news are very powerful. Rarely does fire hurt so many in such a way.