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.

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Wildfire News Of The Day subscriber Tom Eversole, Executive Director of the American Helicopter Services and Aerial Firefighting Association, sent along a press release which announced that, despite rumors to the contrary, heavy air tankers will still be available to fight wildfires in the US for the foreseeable future (1). A firefighter from Bodega, California, who was injured while fighting a 100-acre wildfire caused by a downed power line is suing Pacific Gas and Electric (2); but a wildfire that was burning in Arizona's Coronado National Forest has been controlled (3). A wildfire which burned 150 acres near Colorado's Schriever Air Force Base, home of the 50th Space Wing, Space Warfare Center and the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization, has been contained (4); however, beetles are causing serious headaches for foresters in that state, making wildfire fighting even more dangerous (5). A wildfire was reported in Canadian County, Oklahoma, yesterday (6); and firefighters are bracing for more of the same as ideal fire conditions persist in 16 counties (7). The Texas National Guard has forward-deployed UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters for wildfire duty around San Antonio (8); which is probably a good idea, considering how busy Texas Forest Service was battling wildfires in the Panhandle yesterday (9). Warming temperatures coupled with strong winds have sparked numerous wildfires in South Dakota's Black Hills, according to the Wildland Fire Suppression Division (10); and firefighters in Kentucky found a dead body in a yard being consumed by a grass fire (11). Fire officials in Alabama are conducting controlled burns over 15,000 acres in the Bankhead National Forest (12); while Congressional Fire Services Institute sent along a newsletter which highlights the battles in Washington DC over proposed cuts to FEMA's SAFER grants program, as well as budget cuts to US Fire Administration and other fire-related government agencies (13). An update on wildfires burning in North Carolina is provided in the next article (14); and as fires continued to spring up across neighboring South Carolina, fire officials renewed their warning to residents about the wildfire danger (15). Georgia Forestry Commission firefighters continued to battle a blaze in Dade County that is nearing the thousand-acre mark (16). In Canada, Fort Chipewyan, Alberta, successfully completed a project to reduce wildfires in their area with a $180,000 grant from the Forest Resource Improvement Association (17); while Superior Helicopters has been awarded a two-year contract helping the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources battle future wildfires (18). The next article provides a look at wildfires in the Central American nation of Costa Rica, where the Bomberos de Costa Rica battled about 22 blazes a day (19). Heading to Australia, Parks Victoria will cut an additional 500 km of fire breaks around Melbourne to reduce the danger from bushfires (20); while Yarra Valley Practitioners Project, a volunteer organization which is helping Black Saturday survivors, has received a grant of $450,000 from the state government to continue operations (21). Tired of living on a shoestring budget, volunteer firefighters in New South Wales are asking the new state government to provide a more consistent source of funds (22). A bushfire ember storm caused some problems for firefighters battling a bushfire outside of the Shire of Augusta-Margaret River in Western Australia (23); but citing years of inaction by successive state governments to conduct controlled burns, residents of areas hard hit by recent bushfires outside of Perth welcome an investigation into the causes of the blazes that cost them so much (24); even as the Insurance Council of Australia estimates that claims for damage done by the bushfires have totaled $34.5 million so far (25); one family having nothing left of their home except a pizza oven outside! (26) And finally, Big Brother is watching, as firefighters in Menlo Park, California, began using helmet cams to record their actions at incidents!

(1) Large Airtankers Available for 2011 Fire Season

(2) Injured Bodega firefighter sues PG&E

(3) Coronado National Forest fire under control, for now

(4) Crews believe wildfire near Schriever is contained

(5) Beetles toppling 100,000 trees a day

(6) Crews fight wildfire in central Oklahoma

(7) Wildfires possible as warm, windy and dry conditions continue across Oklahoma

(8) Blackhawks staged in case of wildfires in San Antonio

(9) South Plains under fire watch as acres burn

(10) High temps, strong winds spark SD wildfires

(11) Homeowner found dead in yard by firefighters

(12) Controlled burns to start in forest

(13) Congressional Fire Services Institute Newsletter

(14) Containment line surrounds 600-acre Lowgap fire

(15) Balmy weather brings fires

(16) ‘Very large’ wildfire raging in Dade County, forestry official says

(17) Fort Chip cleanup project reduces risk of forest fires

(18) Superior Helicopters Awarded Two-Year Forest Fire and Emergency Services Contract

(19) Wildfires Common During Dry Season In Costa Rica

(20) Melbourne to get more fire breaks

(21) Fires health service gets a reprieve

(22) Bushfire fighters push for NSW funds

(23) Bushfire threatens Margaret River area

(24) Hills residents welcome bushfire inquiry

(25) Insurance bill for four natural disasters tops $2.7bn

(26) Kelmscott bushfires took everything except Serge Tucci's pizza oven

(27) Menlo Park Firefighters Start Using Unique Helmet Cameras

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