Tag Archives: fire services

More Than 30 Injured in Texas Refinery Plant Explosion | Corona, CA

More Than 30 Injured in Texas Refinery Plant Explosion

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Southern California

The city of Baytown says that Irving-based Exxon Mobil has requested some nearby residents shelter in place as a precaution.

More than 30 people were injured in an explosion and subsequent fire at refinery plant fire near Houston, officials said.

The fire, which is burning polypropylene materials, started Wednesday morning at the Exxon Mobil Baytown Olefins plant, located about 25 miles east of Houston.

The city of Baytown says the fire is in an area that contains polypropylene material and that Irving-based Exxon Mobil has requested some nearby residents shelter in place as a precaution. Baytown city officials said three people suffered injuries and drove themselves to a hospital, according to Houston NBC affiliate KPRC.

Exxon Mobil issued the following written statement about the fire:

“A fire has occurred at the Baytown Olefins Plant. Our fire teams are working to extinguish the fire. We are conducting personnel accounting. Our first priority remains the safety of people, including our employees, contractors and the surrounding community. As a precaution, our Industrial Hygiene staff is conducting air quality monitoring at the site and fence line. We are cooperating with regulatory agencies. We deeply regret any disruption or inconvenience that this incident may have caused the community.”

The area has seen large fires this year involving other petrochemical companies, too.

In April, one worker died after a tank holding a flammable chemical caught fire in Crosby. And in March, a fire burned for days at a petrochemical storage facility in nearby Deer Park.

For more information about fire updates, call CJ Suppression at 888-821-2334 or visit the website at www.cjsuppression.com.

CJ Suppression proudly serves Corona, CA and all surrounding areas.

Fighting Fire with Fire: Ventura County Crews Use Controlled Burns to Prevent Wildfires | Corona, CA

Jeremy Childs, Ventura County Star Published 1:54 p.m. PT May 30, 2019 | Updated 10:05 a.m. PT May 31, 2019

A new study backs up what Ventura County firefighters already knew: A controlled blaze at a time and place of their choosing can prevent a disaster later. With that in mind, local firefighters became fire starters when they conducted their first controlled burn of the year to get rid of built-up vegetation that can fuel a brush blaze into a monster wildfire.

Controlled burns like Wednesday’s – which cleared at least seven acres of tall grass on a ranch in Hidden Valley – can also revitalize soil and give trainees the skills to battle wildfires. Yet despite their effectiveness, a study concluded not enough controlled burns are taking place in the western U.S. to keep wildfires from raging out of control.

The study by University of Idaho researcher Crystal A. Kolden laid the blame mostly on federal agencies that control large amounts of land in the West.

But Kolden conceded that the agencies’ resources are also consumed by firefighting instead of prevention and that they’re dealing with a public that’s more fearful of controlled burns in the western U.S. than elsewhere. Public concerns include excessive smoke and flames getting out of control.

Even if federal agencies seem reluctant to conduct controlled burns, state and local agencies aren’t, the study found.

“Whenever we have to opportunity to do them, we do them,” said Capt. Brian McGrath, a spokesman for the Ventura County Fire Department.

He said his agency is committed to using controlled burns to prevent wildfires, a sentiment echoed by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, also known as Cal Fire.

Cal Fire spokesman Scott McLean said the state has stepped up its prevention efforts after a series of major wildfire seasons that included Ventura County’s Thomas, Woolsey and Hill fires. “The idea behind it is to provide for the safety and protection of property and bring our forests and lands back to resiliency,” McLean said, noting that the recent drought has increased the amount of dry vegetation that fuels wildfires.

‘We have a lot of work ahead of us’

Tasked by Gov. Gavin Newsom with identifying the top 35 areas where fuel-reduction efforts are needed, Cal Fire has come up with about 90,000 acres of land to target. As of early May, Cal Fire had burned 10,518 acres this year, according to McLean, a number that’s grown in the past 30 days.

The state has increased funding for the efforts, letting Cal Fire dedicate six hand crews to thinning wildfire fuel, and has sent 110 National Guard troops to help for six months.

Cal Fire has also performed about 100,000 inspections of defensible spaces this year, and aims to complete 250,000 through December. Despite the doubled-down efforts, McLean cautioned against thinking the problem is taken care of with extra money and resources. “We have a lot of work ahead of us for quite some time,” he said.

The burden in California may be on Cal Fire and local agencies.

Kolden’s study, published Wednesday in the peer-reviewed journal Fire, showed that in places where controlled burns have increased in the past two decades, they’ve mostly been conducted by state or local agencies. In the same period, controlled burns by federal agencies shrank from more than 90% of burns to less than 30%.

Kolden found that from 1998 to 2018, controlled burns grew in acreage by 5% per year throughout the U.S., although there was a 2.3% decrease in Southern California. Kolden found 70% of all controlled burns and 98% of the increase was in the southeastern U.S., which Kolden said could be why that region has seen fewer recent wildfire disasters than the western U.S.

‘There’s a lot to take into account’

While the Ventura County Fire Department may be sold on the idea, conducting controlled burns is easier said than done, according to McGrath. Choosing the location alone can be complicated. “You have to take into consideration the impact on wildlife, water runoff, the type of fuel,” McGrath said. “There’s a lot to take into account.”

The jurisdiction of the land can also play a huge role, as state or federal land is more highly regulated than county or privately-owned land.

“It’s a lot easier to do on private property,” McGrath said. “We’re under the same protocol as an agriculture company burning their crops.”

Even with a location picked out, unexpected factors such as high temperatures or gusty winds can delay controlled burns. McGrath said his agency works closely with the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District to determine the best days to perform burns.

But Mother Nature sometimes beats firefighters to the punch.

“We had a half dozen scheduled, and the Thomas Fire took them all out,” McGrath said.

Jeremy Childs is a breaking news and public safety reporter covering the night shift for the Ventura County Star. He can be reached by calling 805-437-0208 or emailing jeremy.childs@vcstar.com.

For more information about wildfire safety, call CJ Suppression at 888-821-2334 or visit the website at www.cjsuppression.com.

CJ Suppression proudly serves Corona, CA and all surrounding areas.

Kick Off the Summer Safely | Corona, CA

There is nothing more enjoyable than a three-day weekend, unless it’s a three-day weekend in the warmer months. And the kickoff to these summertime festivities is Memorial Day weekend. And it doesn’t matter if you celebrate with a camping trip or just a simple BBQ at home, fun in the sun is the main objective. Unfortunately, with these hot days and warm nights comes outdoor activities and fires, so it is important to keep fire safety in mind while you are grilling those hot dogs and burgers. So, keep these tips in mind at your next summertime event and enjoy your long weekend safely:

Keep water close. Any time there is fire present, keeping a bucket of water within reach will save a lot of time and damages in your bonfire or nearby debris happens to catch on fire.

Carefully choose your location. If you plan on having a BBQ or a firepit, make sure to inspect the surrounding areas for anything that could possible catch on fire. Embers have a tendency to fly away, so a clear area is best.

Clean your grill. Grease fires are some of the worst fires and BBQ grills tend to have lots of grease build-up collecting in the crevices and grills. Make sure to keep your grills clean before every warm season.

Put out the flames. Make sure to extinguish all sources of fire before going to bed or leaving the area. Prevention is key to fire safety so throw some water or sand on top of your fiery fun so nothing happens to the area while you aren’t looking.

For more information about summer fire safety, call CJ Suppression at 888-821-2334 or visit the website at www.cjsuppression.com.

CJ Suppression proudly serves Corona, CA and all surrounding areas.

Fire investigators Inspect Properties as Wildfire Season Nears | Corona, CA

By Dale Yurong Updated 2 hours ago

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) — Cal Fire crews and California National Guard troops continue work on a fuel reduction project in the Prather area. It’s designed to create fuel breaks and help keep foothill and mountain residents safe. But homeowners like Wayne Wilhelm are also doing their part. The 71-year-old knows how dangerous wildfires can be.

“I did not want my house to be one of those that get burnt like Paradise and things like that,” he said. “I feel like my house in a fire would probably survive the situation.”

Cal Fire inspectors have been out educating people on the need to clear 100 feet of defensible space around their home. Weeds, grass, even rubbish can pose a potential fire threat and allow flames to spread quickly.

“A lot of times with wildfires there’s high winds and there’s embers blown around by the fire,” said Seth Brown. “We want people to make their home hardened so an ember doesn’t get into a tight space or into a hole, an eave, into the attic.”

Tulare County Fire crews begin their inspections May 1, but Cal Fire inspectors have been visiting homeowners for a few months now.

Wilhelm’s fire season preparation is seen as ideal though he knows many people in the foothills have some catching up to do.

“I have a neighbor next door to me who has a lot of brush, a lot of stuff on his property,” he said. “I’ve commented to him he needs to clean it up even though he physically can’t do it himself, he can hire people to do it.”

Firefighters recommend you do outdoor property maintenance before 10 a.m. before it warms up and not do the work when it’s windy.

As we’ve seen in past years, rocks hitting metal blades can cause sparks which lead to a fire.

For more information about fire season preparations, call CJ Suppression at 888-821-2334 or visit the website at www.cjsuppression.com.

CJ Suppression proudly serves Corona, CA and all surrounding areas.

Prepare for a Malfunction | Corona, CA

fire sprinklersWe all assume that if we have fire protection, it will work when the time comes to use it. Whether it be something simple like a fire extinguisher or as elaborate as a customized fire suppression system, these tools are things we need to rely on when a fire breaks out. If it doesn’t, the result can be a disaster.

It’s important to note that simply installing a suppression system is only one step in staying safe. Fire suppression systems are often complex pieces of engineering, and they require care, testing, and maintenance in order to remain functional.

The type of system installed, and the nature of the building it is protecting, will determine how often it must be inspected, how often it should be tested, and what type of labor will be required on the system over time. A skilled system designer, such as CJ Suppression, will not only design the system, but can also assist you in establishing and meeting the maintenance and inspection requirements in order to keep your system functioning properly so that if a fire were to occur, lives and property can be saved.

The exact maintenance regime needed depends on the suppression system and use case. The National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) has guidelines not only for the types of systems that should be used in various settings, but also for the ongoing maintenance of those systems for proper compliance and safety purposes.

To ensure their reliability, fire systems must be inspected, tested and maintained. CJ Suppression Services’ qualified and experienced staff stands ready to provide fire protection service and maintenance that will keep your fire protection systems reliable and code compliant.

For more information about fire suppression maintenance, call CJ Suppression at 888-821-2334 or visit the website at www.cjsuppression.com.

CJ Suppression proudly serves Corona and all surrounding areas.

Stay Safe this Summer with Fire Prevention | Corona, CA

Contrary to popular belief, we are not at high risk for fires in hotels or other public places. But, in fact, our biggest threats are at home, where we typically feel our safest. And since much of our summertime fun involves BBQs and fun with friends and family, it is important to be ready for any type of fire danger, from accidental fires at home to wildfires that pop up without warning. One way to do this is with fire sprinklers. You may not automatically think about fire sprinklers in our homes, but home fires can cause property damage, or far worse – take the lives of our loved ones.

Nearly, 2,500 people lose their lives each year in home fires in the United States. It can be nerve wracking to think about these statistics, however, this should be a reason to consider installing fire sprinklers in your home.

Because Hollywood makes an exaggerated image of everything, including fires, many people seem to think that when a fire occurs, the entire system goes off & soaks the place down. This is false. When one fire sprinkler is triggered, the rest do not activate. Nearly 85 percent of the time only one fire sprinkler activates during a fire, which as mentioned earlier, results in significantly less property damage when compared to a fire hose. And now that homes are burning more quickly than before due to having larger spaces and lightweight construction materials, having a fire suppression system is extremely important.

Summertime is a fun time for getting outside and enjoying the weather. Make sure you have one less worry by having fire sprinklers installed in your home.

For more information about fire extinguishers, call CJ Suppression at 888-821-2334 or visit the website at www.cjsuppression.com.

CJ Suppression proudly serves Corona and all surrounding areas.

How the Rain Is Affecting Our Fire Season | Corona, CA

(CNN):  It’s called an “atmospheric river” — basically a river in the sky — that could unleash catastrophic amounts of rain.

And the major storm is barreling right toward the fire-scarred regions of Southern California, with a potential to trigger flash flooding, mudslides and significant debris flow.

The heaviest rainfall is expected Wednesday evening through Thursday, and officials have already ordered mandatory evacuations in Santa Barbara, Ventura and Los Angeles counties.

Up to 2 inches of rain have fallen in the burn scar areas since late Tuesday and the worst in Santa Barbara County is expected after dawn Thursday.

“That’s a concern when you put in the heaviest rainfall anywhere in the United States and put it right over Southern California, directly over burn scars,” CNN meteorologist Pedram Javaheri said.

“Some of the areas could see 6 inches of rainfall over 36 hours. That’s six to eight months of rainfall in 36 hours, right over what would be a significant Thomas Fire burn scar region,” he said.

The Thomas Fire, the largest fire in California’s modern history, ignited in December and burned about 281,900 acres in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties.

Santa Barbara County officials have issued a mandatory evacuation order affecting about 30,000 people in extreme and high-risk debris flow areas ahead of the strongest storm of the season in that region. The mandatory evacuation there was effective from noon Tuesday for burn areas near the Thomas, Sherpa and Whittier fires.

The amount of rain and the intensity are enough to cause flooding even without the impact of the recent fires.

“We could experience localized flooding and road closures, which are not isolated to the burn areas. The threat of rock falls, mudslides and debris flow is high,” said Rob Lewin, director of the Santa Barbara County Office of Emergency Management.

Mandatory and voluntary evacuations also took effect at noon Tuesday in Ventura County.

Los Angeles County officials ordered evacuations in areas affected by the recent Creek and La Tuna Canyon fires starting at 6 p.m. Wednesday, and warned other residents living in areas affected by recent fires to prepare for evacuations and street closures.

The large and powerful storm system across the eastern Pacific Ocean is expected to bring periods of moderate to heavy rain through late Thursday or early Friday.

Atmospheric rivers are long, narrow channels that transport water vapors outside the tropics. The one that’s saturating California is known as the Pineapple Express, because it brings moisture from the tropical Pacific near Hawaii and can wallop the West Coast with rain and snow.

The National Weather Service predicts rainfall rates between a half to three-quarters of an inch per hour, with rain totals of 5 to 10 inches in the foothills and mountains. This total is significantly more than during the January 9 debris flow, when there were 3 to 6 inches of rainfall across the region.

CNN’s Joe Sutton, Paul Vercammen, Monica Garrett and Madeline Scheinost contributed to this report.

For more information about fire season protection, call CJ Suppression at 888-821-2334 or visit the website at www.cjsuppression.com.

Accepting patients from Chino, Ontario, Redlands, Moreno Valley, Upland, Rancho Cucamonga, Rialto, Fontana and all surrounding areas.

Keep Your Home Safe from Winter Fires | Corona, CA

During these chilly winter months outside, we do our best to keep ourselves nice and warm inside. This entails a lot of ways to warm our homes. The problem is, there can be cause for alarm if you do not take the proper precautions in order to keep your and your family fire safe. The following is a list of ways you can protect your home and your loved ones while you stay toasty warm this winter.

  • Have your furnace checked. It’s worth the money to hire a professional to inspect and service your furnace once a year.
  • Have your chimneys and vents checked. If you light fires frequently, you need a chimney sweep service once a year.
  • Test smoke alarms and make sure batteries are fresh.
  • Cover the fireplace with a screen. Tempered glass or a metal screen helps protect sparks from leaving the fireplace.
  • Beware of lit candles. Light candles only when you’re around to watch them and blow them out when you’re ready to leave the room.
  • Beware of space heaters. Don’t put space heaters near curtains, tablecloths or other fluttering fabrics. Buy space heaters with automatic shut-offs before they reach dangerous temperatures.
  • Know how to put out kitchen fires quickly. Keep salt and lids for pans handy to smother a flame.
  • Practice an escape route. Learn how to drop and roll if their clothes were ever to catch on fire.
  • Store a fire extinguisher under the kitchen sink, and in the hall closet near bedrooms.
  • Make sure all household members should know 911.

For more information about winter fire safety, call CJ Suppression at 888-821-2334 or visit the website at www.cjsuppression.com.

Accepting patients from Chino, Ontario, Redlands, Moreno Valley, Upland, Rancho Cucamonga, Rialto, Fontana and all surrounding areas.

Why It’s Important to Design Your Fire System | Corona, CA

When starting a new business, it’s important to prepare for the worst. Accidents happen, so staying prepared is necessary in order to continue to be successful. If you have a new business or are looking for a fire system, consider creating a personalized fire system, customized to your space’s needs.

Because not every business is the same, developing a fire system can ensure you are protecting your business, and everyone in it, is a smart choice. Through a series of comprehensive steps, you can create a system well suited for any environment. In this multi-step process, you can discover what exactly needs protection, and how much protection is needed. An experienced engineering department will then conduct detailed studies to determine the optimum approach to providing the correct system application that will cost-effectively meet your specific needs.

After the assessment, you will have several options with appropriate alternatives based on an assessment of the fire protection and life safety needs:

  • Fire sprinkler design drawings with as much detail required
  • Designs based around the latest NFPA codes. All schematic CAD drawings include underground fire supply, riser details with location within structure, main and branch line locations, and sprinkler head type and location.
  • Bi drawings include back up specifications, water analysis, and hydraulic calculations.
  • Fire sprinkler fabrication / installation / coordination drawings include all compliments listed above including computer generated shop drawings, hydraulic calculations and material submittals.
  • Fire Pump and/or Ground Storage Tank installation drawings with all associated piping and equipment.
  • Special hazard suppression system fabrication / installation drawings.

For more information about fire systems, call CJ Suppression at 888-821-2334 or visit the website at www.cjsuppression.com.

Accepting patients from Chino, Ontario, Redlands, Moreno Valley, Upland, Rancho Cucamonga, Rialto, Fontana and all surrounding areas.

Testing & Maintenance | Fire Suppression Services

ThinkstockPhotos-476757122You’ve probably noticed the inspection sticker on a fire extinguisher – they need to be properly maintained, including testing and recharging, in order to be effective. The same is also true of commercial suppression systems, regardless of the type of system. While some maintenance tasks fall to the owner of the property, trained professionals should conduct more extensive maintenance and testing to ensure that systems are functional and to comply with fire safety regulations.

Regardless of the type of the system, property owners should ensure that suppression systems are clean, clear, and accessible. The visible components should be routinely checked to ensure they’re free of debris and corrosion, and rooms containing suppression hardware should be kept in the temperature range specified by the manufacturer (for example, wet pipe systems should stay above 40 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent freezing).

The designer or installer of your suppression system will likely provide a testing and maintenance schedule for professional service. This maintenance is vital to both safe operation, and complying with most local laws. The service varies significantly with the type of the system: wet systems may require backflow testing, foam systems may require chemical sampling to ensure it’s behaving within acceptable tolerances, kitchen hoods may require inspection to ensure grease isn’t interfering with the system, and dry suppression systems may need to be tested to ensure that the air pressure is maintained at proper levels.

Proper testing can very literally save lives, but it’s also required for compliance with NFPA and local regulations. Typically, testing and maintenance plans are specified by the designer or installer, but if you’re unsure of the requirements, contact your local suppression system designer – they’ll help you understand both the types of testing required to comply with regulations, but also the schedule and costs associated with that testing.

For more information about fire suppression services call CJ Suppression in Corona, CA at 888-821-2334 or visit www.cjsuppression.com.

CJ Suppression also proudly serves Corona, San Bernardino, Yorba Linda, Anaheim, Victorville, Irvine, and surrounding areas.