The Burning Palm Tree of Santa Monica

Jun 17, 2010 by Lisa Newton

Yesterday, about mid-afternoon, I was parking my car on Adelaide Drive in Santa Monica, where I was preparing to shoot the photos for a new Travelin’ Local Walking Tour E-book.

As soon as I opened my car door, I immediate and suddenly was overcome by the smell of smoke. My first reaction was to think something was wrong with my car, but that wasn’t the case, not the case at all.

After stepping outside, I immediately turned around and found the cause of the burning smell:

A local Palm Tree was on fire! It’s not an everyday event, and I can say from firsthand experience now, it’s a bit strange. Equally bizarre was the fact that the tree was burning from the top down:

From that point, a gentleman who was standing ten feet from me was on his cell phone calling the Santa Monica Fire Department. They assured him they were on their way, and in turn he informed me that help was coming in a matter of minutes.

Within seconds, the Santa Monica Fire Department came around the corner, and started to do what they do best, putting out fires–the burning Palm Tree that’s the topic of this story.

Because the fire started from the top of the tree, the most logical explanation was that someone may have tossed something out of their window in the high rise apartment building next door which, as you can see, was a few feet of the burning Palm Tree.

After a couple of hours, I passed by the spot again, and it looked as if nothing had happened. So again what could have turned into a tragedy, was instead another moment for us to offer appreciation to our protectors and public service employees:

Thank you, Santa Monica Fire Department!

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2 Responses to “The Burning Palm Tree of Santa Monica”

  1. Adventure-Some Matthew says:

    It’s great to hear a story involving a fire that had a happy ending! What great luck to be on location in time to grab some great shots!
    Adventure-Some Matthew´s last blog ..Go Disc Golfing My ComLuv Profile


    Lisa Newton Reply:

    @Adventure-Some Matthew, Thanks for your comment, Matthew. The timing was just one of those things.

    And you’re right, happy endings are the best!


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