Brush fire burns on Livermore campus

By Paul Rhein

Thursday, July 16, 2020

brush fire on outskirts of Sandia California property
RING OF FIRE — Cal Fire drops fire retardant to control the spread of the fire near Darcie Kent Vineyards on Tesla Road, on the southeast side of Sandia’s Livermore, California, campus. The fire was fully contained within two hours. (Photo courtesy of Kevin King)

A brush fire burned approximately 28 acres of grassland on the southeast side of Sandia’s Livermore, California, campus on June 18.

The blaze was initially spotted right before 11 a.m. Emergency responders and incident managers arrived quickly on the scene, alerting the workforce and evacuating nearby buildings. Alameda County Fire Department and Cal Fire also were dispatched and deployed ground and
air resources to control the fire.

Andy McIlroy and Dennis Baker watch fire crews
I WALK THE LINE — Sandia Associate Labs Director Andy McIlroy, left, and Emergency Manager Dennis Baker survey the containment effort by local and regional fire resources. (Photo by Paul Rhien)

“There was a really well-coordinated response by Sandia’s Pro (Protective) Force,” said Sandia Emergency Planner John Norden. “We have policies and procedures in place, but until something like this happens, you can train all you want to, but there’s nothing that trumps their professionalism and experience.”

The fire was fully contained within two hours. Employees were cleared to re-enter evacuated buildings, and Alameda County Fire stayed on scene through the afternoon to monitor the area. No injuries or damages were reported.

A separate 1.5-acre vegetation fire was burning at the same time near Mines Road, about five miles east of Lake Del Valle in Livermore, according to local reports.