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While I was doing some research for the Two Bulls Fire in Oregon for a blog post I wrote yesterday, I came across a great page from the Keep Oregon Green Association about campfires. Did you know that in Oregon, in the last five years, 101 campfires built on state protected lands burned 1,611 acres and cost $243,000 to suppress? Did you also know that campfires are the 3rd leading cause of human-caused wildfires? I didn't and this got me thinking ... Campfire

So here we are in the heart of campfire season and this advice the Association gives to Oregonians would be great to pass along to anyone planning on camping this summer.

Please do your part to keep the number of human-caused wildfires to a minimum (heck, let's knock wildfires right out of the park for good!). Before you head out to a campsite, review some of the information below, and then visit the Association's website for the full list of "do's and don't's" you will want to follow. Once you're there, you also find campfire safety video clips and wildfire prevention information. For those of you living in other states, your state forestry website provides information about safe campfire practices and any additional, state-specific information you need to know regarding wildfire safety. And of course, our friend Smokey Bear offers lots of great tips and advice for everyone, including kids. 

Please check these resources out. You'll be glad you did! Thank you, everyone, and please stay safe!

Campfire

Living with Wildfire CBS4 - June 11 2014                                 Graphic Credit:  CBS4 Denver, CO
Today is the one-year anniversary of the Black Forest Fire - the most destructive wildfire in Colorado’s history.  In recognition of the anniversary, Denver’s CBS4 is airing a half-hour special that will provide important information for residents everywhere living in an area with wildland fire potential. 

In addition to the Black Forest Fire, they’ll take a look back at the South Canyon Fire on Storm King Mountain near Glenwood Springs, CO that killed 14 firefighters. The 20th anniversary of that tragic fire is July 6. 

Viewers will also learn about the science of wildfire, mitigation and how firefighters fight flames from the air.  The special segment airs at 6:30pm MDT and will also be available on their website.

NFPA's Conference & Expo 2014, Las Vegas, NV

Dispatches from Mandalay – “Clearing a path for people with special needs clears a path for everyone,” was the message on Tuesday at NFPA C&E from Alan Fraser, Senior Building Code Specialist with NFPA. 

In his well-attended session on emergency evacuation planning and the 20% of the population missed, Fraser explained to the audience that we must consider what evacuation means to us when we become disabled, and not if we become disabled.  

NFPACE 2014 Fraser Evac Presentation

Often referred to as, “people with access and functional needs,” Fraser explained that, in addition at-risk populations like children and the elderly, approximately 56 million Americans deal with speech, hearing, sight, mobility, or cognitive challenges that complicate their ability to receive and respond to evacuation calls. 

In wildland fire, whether it be a half-acre leaf fire in a housing development, or a multi-thousand acre “media fire” out west, the risk to residents and resources remains the same.  The ability for all residents in a community to receive important information and have the ability to act upon it in a timely manner is important for their wellbeing, and that of public safety personnel moving into effected areas

Fraser stressed that in the, “emergency evacuation cone of response” – which starts at the individual and builds out past the home and community, to jurisdiction and beyond depending upon the risk – the role that each resident can play and the requirements for necessary communication between levels and local actors must be identified and connected before an event occurs. 

Fire Adapted Communities strongly promotes such interaction and dialogue between the various audiences that face the common threat of wildfire.  Learn more about the role you can play and the connections you can make with others in your greater community.    

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