Monday, June 29, 2009

Oh dang... My weed's on fire. Again?... Bummer.

While looking for a grow room photo, I came across this one from news.humcounty.com. I thought that was apropriate.
If your 215 operation burns up, is it a medical emergency? Can you legally borrow a cup of medicine from your neighbor? Do you have to renew your permit?

Our area is filled with kind hearted compassionate people. So, if your neighbor's 215 operation burns down, be sure to offer them some of yours. After all, the law legalizing Marijuana is called “The Compassionate Use Act”. So... show some compassion, and loan them some of yours, that is, if their fire doesn't burn your house down too.

I've been to many fires where two or three 215 placards are on prominent display. Most of the fires that I've been to are within a stones throw of another grow operation. We are a bunch of sick puppies in SoHum. I, like Kym Kemp, don't really give a darn about the weed. Many grow operations are technically legal, but hazardous to those that live around them. How do you talk to someone about responsibility when they are dosed up on mind numbing medication?

Most all of the fires that I've been to involved the grower doing something, so totally stupid, that the first thing that comes to mind is, "how could they be so stupid?" Then it occurs to you, that it might be because of their medication. Poor folks! It's kind of a catch-22, you need the medicine, but the medicine makes you do stupid things. My theory is that a person should have to pass a clean drug test to be employed in the growing of marijuana. If any industry wanted to justify drug testing they need look no further than the Marijuana industry. The amount of “accidents” in the Marijuana cultivation industry is legend.

Talk to any firefighter that you trust to talk to you frankly, and they will tell you that well over fifty percent of the fires are directly related to Marijuana, and at least ninety percent involve Marijuana in some way.

I feel that possibly my perception a bit slanted because of my involvement in firefighting. So, I ask you, were you aware of the amount of accidents around growing operations? Or is it just me. Also, I didn't write this to be offensive to anyone. I fully realize that some growers are totally responsible, but you will have to give me that it is not the norm.

I'm not going to run around like Chicken Little and tell you that this is going to be a bad fire season. But, I will tell you that the summer heat causes the potential for disaster. So be careful, and use your heads before doing anything careless that might cause a fire.

31 comments:

Ernie Branscomb said...

To those of you who saw my headline, I apologize for the language. I got a complaint. I changed it. Now it's PC.

But boring...

Anonymous said...

The one thing I haven't got straight in my mind is, how come there are so many people have medical problems that require pot to fix'm up? ?? The good thing I guess is they mostly live in California. Maybe it's the bad air in the Northern part of that state.




Oregon

suzy blah blah said...

if youda asked permission then you wouldnt havta apologize after words, but dang, im sure sorry i missed it. Truth is, the God of Fire has the final word in the end, thats what my yoga teacher said.

We are a bunch of sick puppies in SoHum.

You said it Ernie, thats one of the main reasons Suzy went to a meditation retreat last weekend down near Benbow. It was pretty cewl, all about clearing, grounding, attuning, aligning, and other cool spiritual like stuff and so on, but they advised us not to eat meat and not to smoke or use pot for at least a week before the retreat, so i enjoyed more cold beers thn usual last week ;o) but anyway the Zen master gave us some questions --Suzy forgot most of them but one was --does a dog have the Buddha nature? And another was
--what is the sound of one hand falling in the forest, or something like that. I sort of dozed during most of it, so i didnt get to hear the hand fall, but the guru had a nice smile.

Then at the end just as i was leaving he asked me, "can a sick puppy get a 215?" And his smile sort of changed, and his forehead creased... I just gave him the silent treatment and cut outa there fast LOL... It was sooooo good to smoke a joint after a whole week without.
Sheeesh, if you had 20 or 40 sick puppies just think what you might could do.

this is a link about the God i was learning to respect.

all 4 now gotta go water the garden,
s

Anonymous said...

I fully realize that some growers are totally responsible, but you will have to give me that it is not the norm.

You have every right to be tired of fighting dope caused fires, just as I am sure you are tired of pulling mutilated bodies out of wrecks where alcohol is a cause of the accident. An extra public safety "announcement" is a good idea as there is an extra "high grass" danger this year as we all can see.

I am going to chalk that italisized quote up to a weary firefighter. I hear that it feels that that statement is the truth to you.
If you really feel that way about the norm of growers, than I will leave you with a have a nice day!

Anonymous said...

OREGON! i like the way you talk!!!not with a forked tongue!!!!!

Omr said...

We don't want our dedicated firefighters to have to fight any extra fires. Thanks for your efforts Ernie and all. I drove by the event that presumably prompted this thread this AM.
I guess we will be reading more next week.

Ernie Branscomb said...

OMR, I doubt that it will even make the papers. These fires are fairly common. I don't want anyone to get the impression that I'm talking about today’s fire grudgingly. I have no idea what caused the fire. I know it was a legal grow room, that is all. It may have been struck by lightning for all I know. The only thing that I can quote is the high percentage of fires caused in marijuana grows.

I don't even mind the fire calls. They help us keep our skills up. Usually no one is hurt other than some pretty steep financial loss.

These fires do the fire department more good than harm. But a person can't help but shake their head at some of the stupidity that it seems is in some of these grows. Again, I have no idea what caused today’s fire. It looked like a clean operation to me, but all I did was deliver water to the pumper trucks, so I can't say, and wouldn't have related this post to the fire today other than OMR nailed my toes to the cross.

I don’t intend to add insult to injury. I have a certain amount of compassion for any person that loses anything in a fire. A loss is a loss.

As to the continual comparison of marijuana to alcohol. This time I don’t think that it relates. It’s been a long time since we’ve gone to an alcohol related fire. I agree that the mangled bodies in vehicle wrecks are hard to take, and that is a real downside to the first responder job. But, this post was not about vehicle wrecks or drunks, it was about grow room fires. But if you want to talk about irresponsible drunks, it’s okay with me, but it doesn't relate to some of the dumb things that I see at SOME grow rooms.

Maybe its like crime, 80% of crime is caused by less than 10% of the people. Maybe it’s the same with the grow rooms. 80% of the fires are caused by 10% of the growers. I did not want this post to be personal, so if you see yourself. Clean up your act.

I could tell you about some of the dumb things I've seen at fires, but sometimes it becomes obvious which fire that I would be talking about. Like I say I have nothing against the weed or the grow rooms. Just the remarkable stupidity in some of the fires.

ROSS SHERBURN said...

i don't understand what"GROW ROOMS"are,but have a good idea???why a fire???are they still cooking with wood stoves???enlighten me please,ERNIE!!! i thought grow rooms would be using artificial lights???? IF THIS IS A STUPID question,please forgive me,i haven't lived in the area for awhile.

spyrock said...

right now i'm appreciating the refrigeration man. after spending the weekend between 106 and 110, stan got my out of date unit working again. so i'm chillin here trying to figure out what you guys are doing up there in weed world. i never see anyone smoking pot wherever i go in california. i never smell it. i think the last time i saw a humbolt bud was back in the 70's. most people i know drink regular bud and have for years.
so when you guys complain about weed i start thinking that maybe you live in a different time in some alternate reality. after watching several relatives die from lung cancer due to smoking tobacco, i'm afraid to smoke anything. i smoked a peace pipe at a sundance but i didn't inhale.
one thing i do know is that in the 90 years that my dad was a volunteer fireman, at eight he collected money to buy our town's first fire truck, i never heard him talk about the pendahoe who started the fire, it was his job to put out the fire, i don't think they ever let somebody's house burn down because they didn't like him or because he had different values than them. they were just there to be of service to the community. there was usually a sherrif around to determine if it was arson or some other illegal activity going on.
but i guess weed is fueling your economy up there in weed world and
you don't allow osha to inspect anything to see if everything's safe. i guess if weed was legal you wouldn't see so many unsafe operations causing fires. just fyi.

Omr said...

What disturbs me is that that 10% of the folks causing most of the problems (seemingly in whatever area of concern) seems to be growing into a larger percentage.
Thanks for your continued explanation Ernie, sorry about the nails.

Last year when you and your town crews joined the locals to finish off a 'mindless moment' grass fire in my neighborhood, fire fighters were stretched thin by all the fires, including one in Redway. We all so appreciated that you folks came up h'yar with your long hoses. I am sure that those folks were similarly appreciative, and I am sorry for calling any undo attention to their situation.
Shutting up now.

Anonymous said...

10:32 Well said Spyrock.
I don't know why it is a big deal smokin' pot. I just don't know why ya'll need a prescription for it. I would get really pissed if I needed a presciption to get a jug of Wild Turkey. Some times I have a hard time fallin' to sleep, maybe my back hurts a little or the dog doesn't come home (running coyote's ) but in the long run, a small jug of the Turkey helps out AND without a prescription.
I think the folks in the Emerald Triangle, if they is hurtin' should just build a still and forget the doctors.

Oregon

kymk said...

With the high grasses this year, I hope people will be more careful. I know that many considerate indoor growers shut down their operations during the sensitive fire season. I wish everyone would consider doing that.

Ernie Branscomb said...

Spy,
At the mere mention that Southern Humboldt may have a Marijuana problem, people come out of the woodwork to say that it is everywhere. Maybe it is, but like you, when I leave SoHum the first thing that I notice is that you can’t smell the all pervading weed smell in the air. You can’t walk from one end of Garberville to the other without smelling Marijuana. In Redway, you can’t walk from one end the town to the other and smell any fresh air.

Yet SoHum’s economy is totally dependant on Marijuana. I say that because without it, NO business would survive. (me included) Legitimate business is driven off with pseudo-environmentalism, and other antics. One of the most annoying complications is when a “Money Front Business” opens to wash weed money. They compete with people that are trying to jump through all of the legal hoops, and “legal” gets sucked under rapidly. When profit margins are less than ten percent in a retail business, it only take a small advantage to succeed. Marijuana seems to be the weight that tips the scale. Once the grower has established themselves as a legitimate business, then they can get out of the highly risky grower trade. But, their new occupation is still highly dependant upon the marijuana fueled economy.

Thanks Kym. I can't remember a summer that we haven't had fire danger, and there is always a good reason: too dry, too hot, grass too tall, etc. We really don't need "special" reasons to be careful, but it does seem like a warning is in order.

Anonymous said...

Ernie...The main reason businesses are not locating here is lack of infrastructure and ridiculous housing prices. Jim Carlson is a good example of a guy who tried. If Marijuana were legalized my guess is real estate prices would fall by at least 50% overnight. Then maybe a working family could afford to live here. Marijuana giveth and taketh away. As you said every business in town depends on "funny" money to survive.

Dave Stancliff said...

Good post Ernie.

My oldest son has been a volunteer firefighter for years and he's told me about the many "in-door grow" fires he's gone to in Northern Humboldt.

I wish we did have public service announcements for pot growers up here about safety.

There's a challenge to all of our local media...what do you say?

suzy blah blah said...

In Redway, you can’t walk from one end the town to the other and smell any fresh air.

And the reason this is so necessary is obiously cuz there are soooo many unenlightened peeps out there!! Thats why we hip yogis belive that enviromental holism and world peace will olny come through 2nd hand somke. That and small businesses* with big trucks will save the earth.

We belive that with the minimal number of a certain kind of hip folks practising new wave medication we can make it rain all summer long... if only more peeps would get enlightened and do yoga and medicate more and say ommmm, and inhale when they smoke the peace pipe, LOL...

namtaste,
s
* Suzy will be opening up a small new age enlightened business in either the meadows or Gville soon, watch for the ads and (support your local small businesses) we'll have medication pillows with the Zodiac embroidered on them as well as patuchuli insence and those cewl little glass balls that you turn over and it magically snows!!

Anonymous said...

suzy, where is the meadows?

Oregon

suzy blah blah said...

East of Eden, er, i mean Redway, yuo take a left before you get to Gville and go up on the bluffs where they built this, dig this Oregon, they call it a "industrial" park, and but akso sometimes they call it a "business" park! --LOL! Either way, dont you just luv an oxymoron.
I guess what makes it a park is that they planted a bunch a trees with "decorative" fruit, in front of the rentals. They got u-haul and other little chain businesses and then they got some eco groovy places that'll sell you a sun-oven for $1500. and of course pot grower supplies and massage therapy and that sorta stuff and i dont know what all... its really really weird cuz theres no peeps bopping around like in Garberville so there's no humanness to it, its eerie, like going into the twilight zone or a different planet or something, or maybe like going to Anytown USA, totaly no charactor to the place, just this generic ugly monocultural, uh, mecca --LOL!

man it's hot, and just thinking about the modern new look of our land gives Suzy the blues, i needa cold one right about now, or some turkey on ice ; )

hey do you play music Oregon? Suzys learning to play bass guitar ... ... .. .. ... etc.

cheers,
s

Anonymous said...

suzy, I know where you are talking about. I used to shoot quail up there before there were roads in that area.
I have no musical talent at all so I stick to the radio which is sometimes even a challange. I do like the back porch music I grew up with and the folks that played guitar, banjo and fiddle.
I bet it is hot there in garbertown, it is 93° here on the coast right now. I would say it is good beer drinkin' weather but it's always good weather for beer.
I might have to change my name to Washington cuz I am moving to the Yakama Indian Res..

Oregon

Ernie Branscomb said...

Two feathers (Oregon)
Naw, It's cool here, it's only 92.

There were roads up there! Remenber the Monsche railroad tie mill? That's where we used to send the logs that we screwed up on. If we got them cut too short to meet trim, we would sell them to Monsche. Railroad ties are only seven feet long. The Stud mills used to get really pissed when we would take the whole load out to the tie mill. (can't just move one log and come out) The stud mills used to like to scew us out of full price because technically the log was too short, but they would always meet trim when they went through the mill. Mill people are such bastards. Oops, I forgot that you are "Mill People".

Any way good luck on the Rez.

Anonymous said...

Ernie, I ain't mill people no more. RETIRED I tell ya.
I do remember the mill up there but I was talking about the flat up next to the freeway. Lots of quail up there before the freeway went through.

Oregon

suzy blah blah said...

hey porch sittin is a form of yogic meditation, and when you add the radio and some cold beer its --nirvanda! ... LOL!
i hope you will be happy up there on the Res dude.

Anonymous said...

OREGON!i remember the flat twix redway&garberville.it was on the east side of 101,about half way twix the towns,along the bluffs.my dad used to go to armfields machine shop all the time.i liked looking at the calendars on the wall,that they had there!!!!

spyrock said...

wild turkey was my whiskey, uncle delbert always liked 7&7. i see lots of wild turkeys running around dove's place, but i started getting too covelo for the local people when i used to drink wild turkey. it was like someone from out of my past lives would show up and he talked really clear and there wasn't a trace of fear in his voice and he basically scared whomever was around into going somewhere else before i could take them to look at my fish in the middle of the night. must be my mom's principal side.
i never could see it, but the bikers always could. i'm just a nice guy really. whenever i would get that way grandma nye would say that i was acting like her brother, guy simmerly who was born in the 1880s. i just can't seem to drink it without all this drama showing up. so i drink the nye side's scotch whiskey these days if whiskey is what we are doing. i feed the wild turkeys corn.

Ernie Branscomb said...

Ross, the machine shop is still there. A fellow by the name of Harrel Snodgrass owns it now. Your dad would have known him. He is about 68 years old. He has been a catskinner, truck driver, mechanic, and welder all his life, and he was raised up Spowel Creek.

Spy, I'll start drinking that fancy stuff when they run out of beer.

Ernie Branscomb said...

One of the Redway fire fighters, (vern Snodgrass, Harrel's son) has a new way of telling people how big a fire that we just had. He sizes up a fire by how many lights they had in operation. He calls them a three, four, of five light fire.

Anonymous said...

ernie, from the way i understand it,the outdoor garderners kept getting "flown" and busted,so someone got the great idea to grow indoors and the rest is history.if outdoor was the only way there would be no more fires from growing.simple?

Ernie Branscomb said...

Technically you can grow better dope indoors.

Technically 215 dope is legal, and Obama said he doesn't want the feds to enforce drug laws past what the state would do. So, it's technically legal. Indoor or outdoor. technically speaking.

spyrock said...

i saw a history show last night talking about how the constitution and declaration of independance was written on hemp paper and that george washington grew hemp on 40 acres and that all the patriots wore homespun clothes made out of hemp and that they were making their money selling tobacco to england because it was addictive and the british still smoke like fiends today and that they were smoking hemp when they wrote the declaration of independance and the constitution because that's what americans smoked in those days and that 30 percent of the people who wrote the constitution were masons and much of the constitution of the united states came from the masonic bylaws. so its interesting to hear that our founding fathers were all stoned when they created our country, and somewhere along the way peeps forgot that pot is american as apple pie.

Bunny said...

"Technically you can grow better dope indoors."

Spoken like a true expert. It MAY Be better in one sense but it's not organic. who knows what's on the indoor plant.

Right On Spyrock!! It IS American, there's no excuse for a war on pot. Get over it.

Anonymous said...

Can't find a place to rent now-days because everything has been rented for in-door growing. Good ole America.