A Local Assistance Center (LAC) for the Tick Fire will begin offering recovery support services beginning Wednesday, October 30th. The LAC will be located at the City of Santa Clarita Activity Center (20880 Centre Pointe Park Way, Santa Clarita, CA 91350). Visit www.lacounty.gov/recovery or dial 211 for more information.
Returning Home After a Fire
Take Precautions. Be Safe. Protect Your Health.
Ash Clean-up in Areas Without Fire Damage
Ash, soot, dust, and other airborne particles may have been deposited inside and outside of homes and businesses. While ash from wildfires is relatively non-toxic and like ash that may be found in a home fireplace, it may be irritating to the skin, nose and throat. Exposure to ash in air may trigger asthmatic attacks in people who already have asthma. Ash, dust and debris (particularly from burned buildings) may contain toxic and cancer-causing chemicals, including asbestos, arsenic, and lead.
• Do not let children play in or with items covered by the ash.
• During clean-up, wear household dishwashing gloves, long-sleeved shirt and long pants to avoid skin contact. If you do get ash on your skin, wash it off with warm water and soap as soon as possible.
• A disposable mask with a rating of N-95 or better, which can be purchased from a home/hardware store, can be worn during clean-up to avoid breathing in ash and other airborne particles. They do not protect from gases. N-95 masks must be properly fitted, with no gaps around the edges, for protection. An improperly fitted mask is the same as wearing no mask at all. Follow label instructions on package for proper use. N-95 masks may make it harder to breath, especially for those with lung or heart disease.
• Avoid getting ash into the air as much as possible. Do not use leaf blowers or take other actions that will put ash into the air. Gentle sweeping of indoor and outdoor surfaces, followed by wet mopping, is the best way to clean an area with ash. A solution of bleach and water may be used to disinfect an area, if desired. Read label on container for proper use.
• Shop vacuums and regular household vacuum cleaners are not recommended to clean up ash. These vacuums do not filter out small particles, but instead blow such particles into the air where they can be breathed. However, HEPA-filter vacuums can filter out small particles and can be used.
• Collected ash may be disposed of in the regular trash by placing it in a plastic trash bag first to prevent the ash from becoming airborne and blowing away as the trash can is later emptied.
• Shower regularly throughout the day when cleaning in and out of areas with ash.
Water Safety After a Fire
Boil water notices may be in place due to fire response efforts. Check with your local water district for an update if you are impacted by a fire.
Customers within the affected areas are advised to either use bottled water or boil tap water for one minute prior to its use for drinking, brushing teeth, cooking and cleaning indoor surfaces, such as countertops, stove tops, tables and sinks. Boiling the water kills bacteria and other organisms that may have been introduced to the system. If power (gas or electric) is unavailable, residents should use bottled water, or you can add eight drops of household bleach to one gallon of tap water and let it sit for 30 minutes. If your water looks cloudy or dirty, you should not drink it. Upon return of normal water service, you should flush the hot and cold-water lines until the water appears clear and the water quality returns to normal.
Food Safety After a Power Outage
The safety of food may be a problem following a power outage for an extended period. You may have
experienced a power outage or could find that your kitchen has ash, soot, dust, and other airborne particles.
Follow these recommendations to avoid foodborne illness:
• Any food or drink products with an off odor or signs of spoilage should be thrown out. Best practice is: “When in doubt, throw it out.”
• Generally, food in the refrigerator is safe if the power was out for no more than 4 hours and the refrigerator door was kept shut. Food can be held in the fridge for a few hours if, while the power is out, the doors to the fridge and freezer are kept closed to maintain coldest possible temperatures.
• If a power outage lasts more than four hours or the refrigerator door was not kept shut, it is best to throw away perishable food items such as meat, dairy products and eggs.
• Items that have thawed in the freezer should be thrown away. Do not re-freeze thawed food. All other food items should be inspected to ensure safety.
• Plastic bottles of liquid, such as water, that have been covered with ash should be discarded. It is not enough to rinse off the bottle as these particles contaminate the caps, making them very difficult to decontaminate.
• Food that has not been stored in waterproof or airtight containers and has been covered with ash should be discarded. This includes products that have been stored in cardboard or other soft packaging.
• Food stored in sealed, previously unopened glass or metal cans or jars, such as baby food, should be safe for use. Clean before opening and transfer the contents to another container before eating.
• Dispose of food in trash bags and seal tightly before placing in the trash bin. Double bagging is recommended to prevent fly breeding.
Wildlife After a Fire
Wildlife displaced by wildfire activity may enter your property or home. Places where there is an accumulation of trash or debris can attract wild animals.
• Keep garbage in rodent-proof containers that are tightly covered to avoid attracting animals.
• Do not leave pet food outdoors.
• Check for areas where rats and wild animals can sleep, hide, or find food, and seal these areas if possible.
• Protect yourself by wearing gloves and a mask when cleaning these areas. Wash your hands when you’re finished.
For More Information
• Call the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health at (888) 700-9995
The Castaic Animal Care Center will present its "Wild for Animals 3: Wild for Style" jewelry and crafts sale benefit at the Santa Clarita Valley Boys & Girls Club's Newhall clubhouse on Saturday and Sunday, December 7-8, to raise funds for the animal shelter and its pet adoption efforts.
The latest report by the Office of the Inspector General shows the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station elicited the second-highest number of commendations from the public and, tied for third place for receiving the most number of complaints.
In front of dozens of their students’ families, with some spilling out into the halls and into the parking lot, the administrators and teachers of SCVi presented their case for renewal to the William S. Hart Union High School District board Wednesday.
At approximately 11:30 a.m. Thursday in front of Saugus High School, four students sat in crashed cars to simulate the ramifications of drunken driving, during the two-day “Every 15 Minutes” program funded by the California Office of Traffic Safety and organized by the California Highway Patrol.
Inmate visiting will be impacted at Men’s Central Jail through Thursday, November 30 due to several inmates being diagnosed with the mumps virus, Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department officials said Thursday.
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