June 11, 2013
Misty Volaski, firstname.lastname@example.org
Three structure fires in three days kept members of the Ventura County Fire Department busy in the Ojai Valley over the weekend.
The first, a barn fire, was reported around 11:30 a.m. Friday. County fire officials say
smoke was pouring from a two-story barn in the 10300 block of Creek Road. In less than 30 minutes, the fire was knocked down, and no injuries were reported. The road was briefly closed between North Ventura Avenue and Encino Drive as emergency crews finished their work. Officers with the Ojai Police Department were called out to the scene, although the exact reasons why remained unavailable as the investigation is ongoing.
Sunday at 4:23 a.m., another fire, this one in the 300 block of Bald Street, was reported. It was quickly upgraded to a two-alarm fire as first responders went into rescue mode to assist one of the home’s two residents. A female was transported to Ojai Valley Community Hospital with burns; her condition was unknown as of press time. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, although fire officials said they have found no suspicious circumstances.
Firefighters responded from stations in Ojai, Meiners Oaks, Upper Ojai and Oak View, as well as from Ventura and Santa Paula; knock-down was reported at 5:09 a.m. The home “was a total loss,” said VCFS public information officer Mike Lindberry. “The Red Cross did respond.” Neighbors are collecting items for the residents displaced by the fire; call the Ojai Red Cross at 646-6044 for ways to help.
Sunday at 9:40 p.m., a third fire was reported, in the 500 block of El Sol Avenue in Meiners Oaks. Lindberry said a burning smell was coming from a vent in what turned out to be a small closet fire. The fire was out within 15 minutes, Lindberry added. “It was contained to the room of origin.” No injuries were reported, and the residents were able to stay in the home.
With so many fires in a short period, Lindberry advised residents to exercise caution, particularly due to the drought conditions. “This is something we really need to be looking out for, paying attention to — whether its barbecues, or disposal of barbecue ashes in a trash can, or candles … we’re in a hurry, it’s summertime, it’s hot, so just as a reminder, just make sure you’re paying attention.”
A bank account at Ojai’s Wells Fargo Bank, 202 E. Matilija St., has been set up to help the victims of the Bald Street fire, in which the house was a total loss. Ask for the Rosclely and Miguel Fire Recovery Fund.