Octa's transportation blog

When the Fires Came to OC, OCTA Was Prepared

In the morning hours of Monday, October 26, a fire was reported in the Santiago Canyon area, which includes parts of Irvine, Tustin, and Lake Forest/ Foothill Ranch. Hours later, the Blue Ridge Fire was reported near Yorba Linda. In response to these two fires, OCTA’s Security and Emergency Preparedness department activated the OCTA Emergency Operations Center (EOC). The EOC activation ensured OCTA’s Emergency Operation Plan and Continuity of Operation Plan were followed and over the next four days, the EOC coordinated efforts to ensure that OCTA was able to organize, manage, and execute the emergency actions necessary to protect lives and property. OCTA responded to mandatory evacuations by taking actions to ensure the safety of employees and customers as well as the preservation of OCTA property and assets.

The Irvine Sand Canyon Base, occupied by contractor First Transit for the provision of OC Bus service, was evacuated Monday afternoon as a precautionary measure due to the proximity of the fire and the lack of containment. This evacuation required the movement of 129 buses to the Anaheim and Garden Grove bases.

Temporary detours were put in place on Routes 82, 177, and 480 the morning of October 27. 

With a favorable change in the weather and progress made on containment of the Santiago Fire, all buses used for revenue service were returned to Irvine Sand Canyon Base by Tuesday evening. The remaining buses temporarily housed at the Garden Grove Base were returned to Irvine Sand Canyon Base by October 29. Route detours were discontinued Thursday morning.

OC ACCESS and Same-Day Taxi services were suspended in the evacuation area for approximately 72 hours beginning Monday afternoon.

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