It was another warm and windy night in Southern California. As with any strong East wind event, we anticipated hearing about a small brush fire or two in the morning, so it wasn’t much of a surprise to hear about the one that kicked up about 20 miles away. As restoration contractors, we are always ready for the calls that come in for smoke damage, but nothing could prepare us for this.
The Thomas Fire pushed through our neighboring town of Santa Paula like a freight train, burning at a rate of an acre per second. It was headed directly for the Ventura/Oxnard area we call home. We knew we were going to be extremely busy with calls, but we experienced something else we weren’t anticipating…. a number of employees not able to come to work because they were being evacuated. We called an emergency meeting to review our current response plan and discuss how to supplement it in anticipation of our community calling for help. As the calls came in, we put the plan to work and the “list” began to grow. Then we got a call that changed everything.
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