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PoTW 07/17/09 – Starting off the weekend with a blaze

by on July 18, 2009

We’re up in the Bay Area this weekend to celebrate Christabel and Tedman’s (or Tedman and Christabel’s) wedding!  The plan was this: Christina was at Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) training on Friday, and the hope was that she would be able to get out of the second day (of two days) of training in time for us to get on the road with plenty of time to get on the road to get up to SF at a reasonable hour.

Right out of the gate, we saw a big rig flipped over on the Slauson on ramp to 605.  Not a good omen.  It took us roughly 20-30 minutes to traverse a section of road that normally would have taken all of 3 minutes at worst.  We hit more traffic on I-5 and it took us another 40 minutes to an hour to get out to the grapevine.  Smooth sailing after that, right?  No such luck.  Round about Pyramid Lake, the freeway turns into a parking lot.  This is what we saw:

It took us about an hour to get through the traffic that you see there, and when we finally did, Christina very deftly snapped some pictures to see what all the fuss was about:

Oh. My.  Bus carcass.  We booked it up to SF at the highest, safest speed that we could.  We finally arrived at Pau Pau’s house at about 10:30 PM, having left Whittier at 2:45.  Good Lord, that was a long trip.  After doing some investagative research, I found the following story:

CASTAIC, Calif. — A passenger bus went up in flames Friday on Interstate 5 northwest of Los Angeles but all ten people aboard got off safely, the company said. The blaze sparked a brushfire.

The bus, operated by Coach America, had pulled onto the shoulder of the interstate, a major connector between Los Angeles and California’s Central Valley.

Glass windows broke and several explosions could be heard as the bus burned, and only a skeleton remained after the fire was out.

The vehicle was en route to Bakersfield from the Los Angeles suburb of Torrance, Amtrak spokeswoman Karina Romero in Washington, D.C. said. Amtrak has bus connections in parts of California not served by rail.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.

After the nine passengers and the driver disembarked, the fire spread to nearby brush. Northbound traffic was brought to a halt when firefighters arrived on scene. The fire burned about 10 acres.

In the same region, Los Angeles County firefighters were battling a 55-acre wildfire.

More than 200 firefighters fought the Castaic-area blaze, which erupted at midafternoon in medium brush, said fire Inspector Steve Zermeno.

An aircraft painted a line of pink fire retardant across hilly lands between the fire and a neighborhood of homes. Containment was estimated at 70 percent by nightfall.

Geez o peez.  I’m just glad that we finally made it.  More pictures from today’s goings on as they go on.

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2 Comments
  1. I’m glad you guys finally made it!

  2. Gifford permalink

    I misunderstood this sentence on the first read: “only a skeleton remained”

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