This edit from the ARRL Letter (Vol. 28 No. 33 – Friday, August 21, 2009:
As wildfires threaten the central California coast near Santa Cruz — located between San Jose and Monterey — area radio amateurs have been providing support to law enforcement and fire authorities. According to Santa Cruz County Public Information Officer Bill Conklin, AF6OH, the Santa Cruz County Emergency Operations Center requested support from ARES on Wednesday, August 12: "We activated and established an informal Net to provide fire support resources." Just two days later, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger declared a State of Emergency for Santa Cruz County.
The damage is estimated at $21.4 million.
“Once again amateur radio and ARES proved to be an essential resource in times of emergency," Conklin said. "The citizens of Santa Cruz County are fortunate to have this trained, technical resource available to provide these essential communications resources."