Santa Barbara

A quick fire update: more homes, more acres and the first fatality

photo by jonathan alcornThe latest stats on the Tea fire in Santa Barbara County stand at 2,500 acres burned, more than 100 homes destroyed, and more than 1,800 news items that mention Oprah Winfrey. (But wait, there's more! Apparently Oprah interviewed Rob Lowe about helping neighbors escape the fire.)

Arnold Schwarzenegger has declared a state of emergency for Santa Barbara County, and the first death has been reported. A 98-year-old man with existing health problems has died after being evacuated from his home. In addition, a reported 16 people have been hospitalized with injuries ranging from smoke inhalation to burns.

Check out LA Now for some great little snippets from reporters in the field. The photo at left is by Jonathan Alcorn, who has some more shots on his web site.

Dusk is falling and with it comes the deadly serious question: Will the same Sundowner winds that swiftly turned a five-acre brush fire into a full-on inferno return? Firefighters from throughout the state have responded to the blaze and more are on alert. Guy McCarthy has more info about this weekend's red flag warnings on his Watershed News. Check the Times' fire coverage here. Also in Bloomberg, WSJ, and the SBFD web site.

Photo: Jonathan Alcorn / Used by permission

More by Veronique de Turenne:
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News about the news *
A few links from a few different places
Ups and downs in the local media landscape
Let's talk about anything but the weather
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KFWB going all sports, LA Times needs water, more media notes
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