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, December 16, 2009


We lead off Wildfire News Of The Day with two technology stories from NASA: the space agency is revealing some interesting data about the impact of air pollution, including smoke from wildfires, on the Arctic (1); and a long-serving satellite named Terra, which has been used by US Forest Service to track wildfire activity, is celebrating a birthday (2)! In the wake of last week's rainstorms, Southern California's Cleveland National Forest has reopened its campgrounds and reduced its fire restrictions (3); and citing a bill before Congress as 'the end of the timber wars' in Oregon, both environmentalists and foresters are hopeful that the new legislation will be just that, as the next two articles show (4)(5). Fire officials are being fined $12,000 by an air quality district in eastern Washington state due to smoke from a wildfire (6); followed by an Op-Ed piece from Colorado which argues that money alone will not solve the problem of vast stretches of beetle-killed trees (7). Firefighters in Brewster County, Texas, have finally roped in a large grass fire that destroyed numerous sheds and other infrastructure over the past couple of days (8). A summary of wildfire activity in the South American nation of Chile is provided by the next article (9). Heading Down Under, as if farmers on New Zealand's South Island didn't have enough troubles due to damage from recent bushfires, now they have to worry about whether their insurance will cover their losses (10)! David Cant, Manager of Aviation Services for South Australia's Country Fire Service, sent along two items of interest: A Current Affair did a segment on helicopter heroes (11); and next we ride along with a bushfire helicopter pilot as his fireship goes into action (12). As the weather cools a bit, firefighters in Victoria, South Australia, and New South Wales are hopeful that they can get a handle on bushfires burning in those states (13); while fire managers are hopeful that the arrival of a heavy-lift helicopter in Victoria's Otways will provide much-needed transportation to convey firefighters into difficult terrain to fight raging bushfires (14). A commentator discusses the importance of bushfire plans in Victoria, one of the most fire-prone areas in the world (15); but an internet service provider was blamed for the crash of Country Fire Authority's website as bushfire conditions worsened across that state (16). In New South Wales, volunteer firefighters weigh in on the recent bushfire activity (17); while Rural Fire Service firefighters have warned residents of Sydney that they may need to be prepared to defend their homes from approaching bushfires (18). The danger to homes in northern Tasmania is diminishing (19). Having put up with four days of choking on bushfire smoke in the air, residents of Perth are hoping that forecasts of cooler weather will help firefighters in West Australia get a handle on nearby bushfires (20); but at least one blaze was quickly dealt with elsewhere in that state (21). And finally, a local non-profit provided firefighters in Santa Barbara what every wildland firefighter wants for Christmas: chainsaws, wildfire goggles, and other much-needed equipment!

(1) NASA Takes A Rare Look At Warming Arctic

(2) Terra Celebrates 10 Years In Orbit

(3) Cleveland National Forest restrictions reduced, all campgrounds open

(4) Wyden bill aims to end eastern Oregon timber disputes

(5) Foes Unite to Support Bill on Old-Growth Forests

(6) Forest Service fined for Yakima Valley smoke

(7) Tribune Opinion: More than just money needed to battle bark beetles

(8) Large Fire Now Contained in Brewster County

(9) Chile Deals With Increased Region V Forest Fires

(10) Farmers urged to check fire coverage

(11) Helicopter Fire Heroes

(12) On board with a firefighting chopper pilot

(13) Bushfire threat eases in three states

(14) A heavy-duty water-bombing helicopter will arrive in Colac today

(15) Fire plans a must in Victoria

(16) CFA website crashes as temperatures soar across Victoria

(17) Illawarra firefighting teams at Bendemeer

(18) Bushfire alert as flames approach homes

(19) Northern bushfire threat eases

(20) Haze continues as bushfires burn

(21) Bushfire flares up in Martin

(22) Alliance donates more equipment to firefighters

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