SAN DIEGO (CNS) - San Diego's fire chief Wednesday endorsed Mayor Jerry Sanders' plan for ending staffing cuts that put fire engines out of service on a rotating basis to save money, and the Rancho Penasquitos station would be the first to benefit.
Staffing at fire stations has been reduced via "brownouts," in which eight engines companies are out of service daily. The tactic, rotating among 13 stations, was begun by the mayor to save $11.5 million.
He proposed restoring four engines when the new fiscal year begins July 1, and the rest on Jan. 1, 2012.
Engine 40 in Rancho Penasquitos will return to full-time service on July 1, he said. The station was selected as the first to be restored, because of the "poor response times we have there."
Engine 10, in the College Area, and Engine 44, in Mira Mesa, will be out of service less often, he said. Other staffing reductions will continue until Jan. 1.
The fire station in Rancho Penasquitos -- a hilly, spread-out bedroom community -- has some of the longest average response times in the city, more than 6 minutes. The average response time for the first fire vehicle to reach an emergency scene climbed 30 seconds after brownouts were implemented, according to the SDFRD.
"I would expect the response times to go back to where they were before the brownouts," Mainar said.
The plan by the mayor and fire chief needs approval by the City Council, but that is expected to be a formality. Council members have said ending the brownouts was their top budget priority.
A cooling trend is expected to last through Tuesday. Morning low clouds will spread from coastal areas to the western valleys. A high pressure system is expected to sweep in Wednesday and bring warmer temperatures through Friday.
A Mexican fishing boat caught fire and burned 30 miles south of San Diego, and while 15 people were rescued by a U.S.- flagged vessel, three people remained missing Sunday.
Community members gathered together Sunday in an effort to keep a sexually violent predator out of the East County. Earlier this month, a judge ordered the release of Alvin Ray from a treatment program to a home in Jacumba Hot Springs where he'll be closely supervised as part of a conditional release program.
Bikes, scooters and any self-powered mode of transport took over the streets of Ocean Beach Sunday. To encourage everyone to slow down and get to know their community, a three-mile stretch was closed to cars with most of the car-free area on Bacon Street.
At least one person was seriously injured Sunday morning in a crash that may have involved an alcohol-impaired driver, the California Highway Patrol said.
If you want to vote in the Nov. 6 Gubernatorial General Election, you should register by Monday, Oct. 22. If you miss the deadline, you may still conditionally register and vote provisionally through Election Day but you will have to register in person at the Registrar of Voters office in Kearny Mesa.
The San Diego Gulls will try to extend a three-game winning streak when they resume their four-game homestand Friday following Saturday night's 5-4 victory over the Bakersfield Condors.
A 45-year-old man is expected to survive gunshot wounds suffered during a shooting by a gunman at a liquor store in the Mountain View community of San Diego, a police officer said Sunday.
All southbound lanes of Interstate 5 will be closed from 9:30 p.m. to 5 a.m. starting Sunday night and continuing through Oct. 25, according to the San Diego Association of Governments.
A blessing. That is exactly what Kelly Muno is calling what happened to her son, a former San Diego State University baseball star, on Friday afternoon.