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, October 27, 2011


A new book titled Empire of the Beetle: How Human Folly and a Tiny Bug Are Killing North America's Great Forests discusses the dilemma posed by the pine mountain beetle across North America (1). As Santa Ana winds were forecast for Southern California, CAL FIRE's Air Attack Base at Hemet-Ryan Airport stood ready (2); but although the National Weather Service canceled a Red Flag warning prompted by Santa Ana winds, firefighters in San Diego County remain on high alert (3); adding to their worries, the high price of water is forcing members of the California Avocado Commission to let their orchards die, increasing the wildfire danger (4); but US Forest Service has agreed to reopen Santa Maria Air Tanker Base full-time after intense political pressure from local congressman and fire chiefs (5). Although the short Washington state wildfire season was good news for most people, the owners of Chewack Wildfire hope for a bit more activity (and a bit more income) next year (6). A debris fire became a wildfire that briefly threatened an apartment complex in Challis, Idaho (7); while the impact of the U.S. Forest Service plan to restrict the use of aerial fire retardant in that state is examined by the next article (8). The Drought Report indicated that although rain was falling across Oklahoma and Texas, more was needed to reverse a trend which has seen more than 90% of Texas in drought conditions (9). The fire situation in Texas, where at least a half a dozen new wildfires were reported, is examined by the next article (10); where the Texas Forest Service faces a $34 million budget cut, causing volunteer fire departments in Bell County that battled wildfires all summer to feel the pinch (11); but AEP Texas and the AEP Foundation donated $100,000 to the Texas Wildfire Relief Fund (12); and in the aftermath of the Texas wildfires, the City of Huntsville Fire Department will hold a wildfire education meeting next week (13); while the International Association of Emergency Managers recognize the efforts of a University of Texas professor in designing a statewide evacuation coordination system which utilizes GPS tracking and RFID wristbands (14). The impact of pine mountain beetles on the wildfire danger in South Dakota's Black Hills is examined by the next article (15); followed by a letter from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources which praised the tireless efforts of employees who cleared out a potential wildfire hazard after a major blowdown (16). The National Park Service will be conducting six prescribed burns in Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore this fall (17). Firefighters used chainsaws and leaf blowers to attack a wildfire which burned between 2 and 3 acres along Arkansas's Buffalo National River (18); while Alabama's Cherokee Ridge Alpine Trail Association volunteers are restoring the Smith Mountain Fire Tower, a landmark built in 1939 (19); but after spending $25 million fighting wildfires in Virginia's Great Dismal Swamp Wildlife Refuge since 2008, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is considering making some changes (20). In Canada, the Manitoba Conservation Department took receipt of the second of four CL-415 air-tankers as part of a $126 million contract with Bombardier (21). And finally, firefighters in the Western Australian town of Williams are fired up about their new $380,000 bushfire truck!

(1) Don't Blame the Beetles

(2) Riverside County: Fire crews gear up as Santa Ana gusts hit region

(3) Firefighters on Alert Despite Red Flag Warning Cancellation

(4) Dead Avocado Groves May Pose Wildfire Danger

(5) Air Tanker Base Back to Full Service

(6) Short wildfire season bad news for a Spokane business

(7) Firefighters stop brush fire

(8) Fire Season Wraps Up as Retardant Regulations Tighten

(9) Texas drought continues to shrink, more rain needed

(10) Wildfires still burn strong

(11) Fighting more than fires: Bell Co. volunteer fire departments grapple with reduced grants, increased costs

(12) AEP Texas, foundation contribute to Texas Wildfire Relief Fund

(13) Huntsville Offers Home and Wildfire Prevention Education

(14) GPS aids wildfire evacuees

(15) A complicated balance

(16) DNR Sec. Praises Those Working on Northwestern Wisconsin Forest Blowdown

(17) Prescribed burns planned for Indiana Dunes Lakeshore

(18) Buffalo National River firefighters respond to small wildfire in Searcy Co.

(19) Effort under way to save Lake Martin landmark

(20) Cost of fighting Great Dismal Swamp wildfires prompts discussion on operations

(21) Manitoba Government Receives Second CL-415

(22) Firefighters revved up about new fire truck

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