Firebomber Publications Blog

Wildfire News Of The Day (the Firebomber Publications blog) provides comprehensive international wildfire news. Subscribers include over 10,000 personnel from fire agencies, contractors, and government entities on five continents. "BEST NEWSLETTER I HAVE EVER SEEN IN MY 32 YEARS IN THE FIRE SERVICE" - San Diego Fire Department Chief Brian Fennessy.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


First up in wildfire news today, Chris Mehl of Headwaters Economics sent along a press release for their latest white paper on how to rein in runaway costs on wildfire suppression in the US (the full report can be read here) (1). Kristina Hajjar, Director of Communications for Los Angeles County Fire Department, sent along an official announcement of Fire Chief Freeman's impending retirement after 21 years on the job (2). The next two articles discuss pressure by LA County to change US Forest Service night-flying policies over the Angeles National Forest (3)(4). Clouds of blowing ash from the Station Fire drifted across northern Los Angeles County yesterday due to high winds in the foothills (5); even as US Forest Service employed the NASA Ikhana drone to map areas burned by 2008's Piute Fire in the sequoias and the Station Fire (6). A wind-driven wildfire in Orange County was finally corralled by firefighters early this morning after burning about 60 acres, but an LA County Fire helicopter had to be dispatched for night attack on the blaze because wrangling between the fire department and the firefighter's union prevented OCFA helicopters from operating at night, despite the fact pilots have night-vision goggles (7). Apparently an arsonist on a dirt bike is setting wildfires along the border between Michigan and Canada (8); followed by a story about a USGS researcher who discusses something which has spawned many a wildfire in coal mining regions of the US: coal fires (9). Residents of a South Carolina neighborhood ravaged by wildfires earlier this year find new meaning in Thanksgiving (10); while the next article provides a snapshot of wildfire activity in Georgia over the past year (11). Horse enthusiasts in the UK have raised an impressive 5,000 pounds to help a veterinarian whose practice was burned in the Black Saturday bushfires rebuild (12). A member of Victoria's Rural Fire Service feels that bushfire prevention education is the key to keeping communities safer, as shown by a significant reduction in bushfires in his region in the past five or six years (13); but a training error caused a false bushfire alarm to be posted on Country Fire Authority's website (14). One bushfire commissioner felt that towns devastated by Black Saturday bushfires should be call 'disaster zones' rather than 'crime scenes' (15); even as an environmental group in Victoria feels there should be an investigation into the diversion of bushfire prevention resources by logging interests (16). Western Australia's premier urged the two state firefighting agencies to work better together to avoid tragedies such as the one in which several truck drivers were burned alive while trying to travel a highway when a bushfire burned over the area (17). A climate scientist warns that parts of New South Wales could become more prone to out-of-season bushfires (18); and NSW vintners fear that bushfire smoke may have ruined their next crop of wine grapes (19). And finally, for aspiring heli-tanker pilots, iPhone has a new application that allows you to pilot a Bell 205 firefighting helicopter into harm's way! Happy Thanksgiving to all US-based Wildfire News Of The Day readers!

(1) Report Promotes Ten Solutions to Curb Forest Fire Costs, currently $3 billion per year

(2) LA County Fire Chief P. Michael Freeman Announces 2010 Retirement

(3) Board of Supervisors supports county fire recommendations

(4) LA County Supes vote to push changes in US Forest Service firefighting policies

(5) Winds blow ash from burn areas in LA area

(6) NASA Predator scans California burn areas

(7) Firefighters optimistic about blaze

(8) Walpole Island battles wildfires set by mysterious biker

(9) Break the glass, douse the flames

(10) Barefoot family plans first Thanksgiving after wildfire

(11) Rangers watch over the woods

(12) Showing fans help vet practice caught in Australian bushfires

(13) Bushfire brigades focus on local prevention

(14) Killer bushfire warning sent in Country Fire Authority bungle

(15) Commissioner questions calling bushfire towns 'crime scenes'

(16) Green group questions logging impact on bushfires

(17) Premier tells agencies to work better together

(18) Early bushfire threat tipped to be common

(19) Bushfire smoke may have tainted grapes

(20) Now You Can Use Your iPhone to Put Out Wildfires

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