Travel Update October 2019: Kincade Fire and Getty Fire in California

Large areas of both northern California and southern California have been dealing with dangerous wildfires which may potentially affect your travel plans over the next few days. You may want to consider delaying your travel — or, at least, keep yourself updated as to the latest information pertaining to the weather — until these wildfires are contained enough to no longer pose a threat to safety overall.

Travel Update October 2019: Kincade Fire and Getty Fire in California

A combination of extremely low humidity, offshore Santa Ana wind gusts of up to 50 miles per hour, and dry timber and brush have been hampering efforts by firefighters to contain what is known as the Getty Fire, which has been active for three days but has already consumed 745 acres. The good news is that this wildfire is currently 39 percent contained — yet at least 12 residences have already been destroyed; and an additional five residences have been damaged; but 7,091 residences are still considered to be threatened at this time. A mandatory evacuation zone is still in effect.

A high wind warning is currently in effect for many of the mountains in Los Angeles County from the National Weather Service. Isolated wind gusts of up to 70 miles per hour are possible; and multiple wind advisories are in effect for today in Los Angeles and surrounding areas.

Meanwhile, similar weather conditions have been hampering efforts by firefighters to contain what is known as the Kincade Fire, which has been active for one week but has already consumed 76,825 acres; but 34,571 acres — or 45 percent — of this fire are estimated to be contained. At one point, this wildfire grew to reduce the percentage of containment. At least 266 structures have already been destroyed; and an additional 47 structures have been damaged.

Flight Waivers, Delays and Cancellations

If both northern California and southern California are in your travel plans over the next few days, expect delays and cancellations of flights. Keep up to date on the latest information pertaining to these wildfires which may affect your travel plans. Better yet, postponing or canceling your trip might be a better option — no matter which mode of travel you plan on taking.

If you have a flight scheduled, your flight may be delayed or canceled — and you may be eligible for a waiver of a fee to change your itinerary. If you are driving in any of the affected areas, watch out for deteriorating weather conditions and traffic problems.

Here are seven airlines which have issued travel alerts as a result of these wildfires:

  • American Airlines has issued travel alerts for
    • Burbank, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Ontario and Santa Ana for Monday, October 28, 2019 through Friday, November 1, 2019; and Wednesday, November 6, 2019 is the last day on which tickets must be reissued and rebooked travel must begin.
    • Santa Rosa for Monday, October 28, 2019 through Sunday, November 3, 2019; and Friday, November 8, 2019 is the last day on which tickets must be reissued and rebooked travel must begin.
  • Delta Air Lines has issued travel alerts for Burbank, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Ontario and Santa Ana for Tuesday, October 29, 2019 through Wednesday, October 30, 2019; and Saturday, November 2, 2019 is the last day on which tickets must be reissued and rebooked travel must begin.
  • United Airlines has issued a travel alert for Santa Rosa for Sunday, October 27, 2019 through Thursday, October 31, 2019; and Monday, November 4, 2019 is the last day on which tickets must be reissued and rebooked travel must begin.
  • Alaska Airlines has issued a travel alert for Santa Rosa for Saturday, October 26, 2019 through Sunday, November 3, 2019; and Thursday, November 7, 2019 is the last day on which tickets must be reissued and rebooked travel must begin.
  • Southwest Airlines has issued travel alerts for Burbank, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Ontario and Santa Ana for Tuesday, October 29, 2019 through Wednesday, October 30, 2019; and Wednesday, November 13, 2019 is the last day on which tickets must be reissued and rebooked travel must begin.
  • JetBlue Airways has issued travel alerts for Burbank, Long Beach, Los Angeles and Ontario for Tuesday, October 29, 2019 through Friday, November 1, 2019; and Tuesday, November 5, 2019 is the last day on which tickets must be reissued and rebooked travel must begin.
  • Sun Country Airlines has issued travel alerts for:
    • Santa Rosa for Thursday, October 31, 2019 due to the airport being closed. Contact the airline for further information.
    • Los Angeles for Wednesday, October 30, 2019; and Sunday, November 3, 2019 is the last day on which tickets must be reissued and rebooked travel must begin.

Summary

Do not be surprised if the travel waivers are expanded in terms of duration, as the wildfires are not expected to be completely under control until sometime next month. No measurable rain is officially forecast in the near future for the areas affected by the wildfires.

Be sure to contact your airline or transportation provider for the latest information pertaining to your travels — if they are adversely affected — and please: travel safely.

My thoughts and prayers are with the people of both northern California and southern California…

Source: California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

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