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  1. #51
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    South Canyon/Storm King Fire, 25 years ago today.
    https://wildfiretoday.com/2019/07/06...king-mountain/

    Excellent video:
    And I guess that I just don't know

  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meadow Skipper View Post
    This subject is starting to get more attention:
    Smoke from US wildfires boosting health risk for millions

    This one is of real interest to me:
    More Wildfires Bring Focus On How All That Smoke May Harm Firefighters
    I was a warhorse with getting smoked and dusted, it was one of my strengths. I could tolerate acrid fucked up sections of line other guys would be puking and couldn’t keep their eyes open and stuff. Now I’m allergic to everything. I really think it’s related.

  3. #53
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    FB Post from Fire, Weather & Avalanche Center:






    Let's talk about Alaska! At this point, a total of 38 wildfires are burning 696,807 acres across the country's largest state. The largest of these include the Swan Lake, Hess Creek, Boundary River, and North River Fires. Recently, Anchorage, Alaska reached a temperature of 90° for the first time ever. These fires remain largely uncontrolled and ever-growing due to dry fuels and poor fire weather conditions.

    See more details at www.fireweatheravalanche.org/fire/state/alaska.
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  4. #54
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    AK’s getting it’s ass kicked.

    I couldn’t find the exact number but there are a ton of hotshot/type 1 crews and smokejumpers from the lower 48 that have been sent to Alaska. It’s pretty unusual because hotshots in particular are a somewhat limited resource and expensive to move and support (20 people each). When I worked fire in AK in the 80s it was unusual to get hotshot crews up from the lower 48 and I don’t recall ever getting more than 5 at a time, if ever.

    It’s a real indicator of the level of fire problems they’re having in AK:
    https://wildfiretoday.com/2019/07/08...-alaska-fires/

    Looks like AK has by far most of the smokejumpers assigned there as well.
    https://www.nifc.gov/smokejumper/reports/smjrpt.php
    And I guess that I just don't know

  5. #55
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    ^^^it seems like our govt throws massive resources at fighting fire in the AK bush. Are there really sufficient values at risk to justify the effort vs letting it burn?
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  6. #56
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    ^ Well, of the 122 active fires showing on today’s AK fire situation report over half are in Limited Protection (LIM) status, which means they’re not getting any (or very little) suppression action.

    The whole state is divided by an established fire management plan plan into Critical, Full, Modified, and Limited protection status. Fires in Critical and Full status get balls-to-the-wall suppression action, with CRI getting priority when suppression resources are scarce. Modified gets different response levels depending on the weather and time of year. Limited status lands only get suppression action if smoke becomes a problem or when suppression resources are strained enough that immediate response is needed so that it doesn’t become a problem later.

    There are many villages, improvements, military installations, inholdings, timber and mining resources, and Native-owned allotments (very important politically) all over the state that get aggressive suppression action. Native corporations are very, very powerful politically, know what I mean? Also bad smoke can isolate (the many) villages that are off the road system by preventing air traffic as well as severely impact towns like Fairbanks and Anchorage and military defense bases. And it can fuck up the tourist industry. But a huge amount of the state is in Limited protection status because it isn’t worth the bucks it would cost to suppress fires...usually.

    There’s a lot of gaming that goes on during busy years, trying to make the most intelligent decision on cost vs. value. The Alaska Fire Management Plan has most of the strategy and decision parameters laid out. Cost vs. value is a major determinant.

    It’s a big state, so while it looks like a lot of stuff goes toward fires there, it actually isn’t that much compared to a similar amount of area in the lower 48.
    And I guess that I just don't know

  7. #57
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    You written a few incident reports, haven't you, MS?

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by splat View Post
    You written a few incident reports, haven't you, MS?
    Back in the 80s I worked some on developing and refining the AK fire management plan. And I lived that thing for a number of seasons.
    And I guess that I just don't know

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meadow Skipper View Post
    AK’s getting it’s ass kicked.

    I couldn’t find the exact number but there are a ton of hotshot/type 1 crews and smokejumpers from the lower 48 that have been sent to Alaska. It’s pretty unusual because hotshots in particular are a somewhat limited resource and expensive to move and support (20 people each). When I worked fire in AK in the 80s it was unusual to get hotshot crews up from the lower 48 and I don’t recall ever getting more than 5 at a time, if ever.

    It’s a real indicator of the level of fire problems they’re having in AK:
    https://wildfiretoday.com/2019/07/08...-alaska-fires/

    Looks like AK has by far most of the smokejumpers assigned there as well.
    https://www.nifc.gov/smokejumper/reports/smjrpt.php
    You can download the "All Crews Currently Assigned in Alaska" excel doc to see everybody that is up there- https://fire.ak.blm.gov/logdisp/crews.php

    Matching that up with the Sit Report is pretty wild. Yesterday there was a fire with extreme fire behavior that burned went from <2K acres to >20K acres in a day in timber with only two shot crews assigned to it. Would be a pretty wild ride to be there. I think it was Midnight Sun IHC and Sawtooth IHC on that fire yesterday. Looks like Midnight Sun maybe timed out and a couple more crews showed up today.

    There were also another "extreme fire behavior" fire last week with a single T2IA crew from the lower 48 assigned. You know way better than I do what it means to fight a fire like that in AK (maybe they were just doing structure protection a couple miles in front of the fire and not digging line/firing), but it is just insane how stretched things up there seem to be right now.
    Last edited by Kevo; 07-09-2019 at 03:41 PM.

  10. #60
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    Thanks Kevo, I couldn’t find that crew list when I was typing out that post.

    I counted 16 Type 1 crews and 28(!) Type 2/2IA crews from the Lower 48. That’s nuts. But I’ve heard they’ve been having tons of trouble hiring EFF type 2 crews out of the villages. Times have changed.

    I bet that lone T2IA crew was doing structure protection. The sit report talks about a few huge ripping fires with just like a handful of people on them doing structure/allotment protection.
    And I guess that I just don't know

  11. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by ill-advised strategy View Post
    I was a warhorse with getting smoked and dusted, it was one of my strengths. I could tolerate acrid fucked up sections of line other guys would be puking and couldn’t keep their eyes open and stuff. Now I’m allergic to everything. I really think it’s related.
    That sucks, J. Hard to see how it's not related.

  12. #62
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  13. #63
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    2019 Wildfire Season

    The fire in maui has been impressive. We got stuck on one side of it at the aquarium and could not make it back to our place until late when the roads re-opened. We were planning to stay in a shelter.

    Pretty limited resources because of an island. Trade winds drove the thing to be big and they probably will do it again today be cuz the fire ain't out yet.

    Sent from my SPH-L710 using TGR Forums mobile app
    Last edited by bodywhomper; 07-12-2019 at 01:04 PM.

  14. #64
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    I count 138 jumpers committed in AK this morning. That's just crazy.

  15. #65
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    Alaska got hammered again on 7/11 by lightning fires - 27 new ones.
    https://fire.ak.blm.gov/content/aicc...n%20Report.pdf

    Currently 40 burning in Critical and Full protection areas, 21 in Modified, 81 in Limited. The 7/12 sit report states that smoke, weather, and lack of resources are preventing full initial attack on at least two large new fires in Full protection areas.

    This is nuts:
    https://fire.ak.blm.gov/content/aicc...ea%20Crews.pdf
    There’s a crew from Ohio working in AK.
    And I guess that I just don't know

  16. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by bodywhomper View Post
    The fire in maui has been impressive. We got stuck on one side of it at the aquarium and could not make it back to our place until late when the roads re-opened. We were planning to stay in a shelter.

    Pretty limited resources because of an island. Trade winds drove the thing to be big and they probably will do it again today be cuz the fire ain't out yet.

    Sent from my SPH-L710 using TGR Forums mobile app





    Maui residents can go home, but wildfire persists

    Maui County activated its Emergency Operations Center in the morning. By afternoon, the flames were burning out of control and emergency officials sent a mobile alert warning nearby residents to evacuate.

    More than 600 people fled as the blaze scorched 3,000 acres, the mayor's office said. The Maui Humane Society moved its animals in crates and kennels to a nearby high school.
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  17. #67
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    They say the main Maui fire (there are two or three now, depending on your information source) is at 9k acres. A large populated area (kihei) is in smoke. With the trade winds, the fires will probably ramp up again tomorrow. While creeping along a road this evening, we watched helicopters rush overhead between the ocean and the power plant dropping water from buckets on an area burning next to the power plant.

  18. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by bodywhomper View Post
    They say the main Maui fire (there are two or three now, depending on your information source) is at 9k acres. A large populated area (kihei) is in smoke. With the trade winds, the fires will probably ramp up again tomorrow. While creeping along a road this evening, we watched helicopters rush overhead between the ocean and the power plant dropping water from buckets on an area burning next to the power plant.
    If only they had raked up those cane fields and coconuts.....................
    Kindness is a bridge between all people

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  19. #69
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    Aug 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by KQ View Post
    If only they had raked up those cane fields and coconuts.....................
    Been hearing tons of local opinions about recent land use decisions of the former cane fields in the general fire area. Pretty interesting. I wonder if anything will change.

    We drove up the big mtn today to do some skiing (sorry, no pics). We drove through the area that seemed where ignition started. I'll post picts later if worthwhile.

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  20. #70
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    I got a call for a line medic deployment to AK but then got turned down because I haven't worked an assignment in AK before. I was quite bummed.

  21. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by snapt View Post
    I got a call for a line medic deployment to AK but then got turned down because I haven't worked an assignment in AK before. I was quite bummed.
    Sucks. I wonder what the reasoning was. Most of the people from the lower 48 up there now haven’t had a previous AK assignment. Seems maybe a little shady.
    And I guess that I just don't know

  22. #72
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    2019 Wildfire Season

    The trade winds continue to stoke the fire in Maui....twas at 80% containment this morning, but has now flared back up (along with lots of blowing ash/dust) as the trades have been pretty intense today.
    Last edited by bodywhomper; 07-15-2019 at 02:44 AM.

  23. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by snapt View Post
    I got a call for a line medic deployment to AK but then got turned down because I haven't worked an assignment in AK before. I was quite bummed.
    pourquoi?
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  24. #74
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    This really surprises me, not that I know everything about why people turn to this option. I understand it's a high stress job, just didn't think it was "that" kind of stress.


    When fire season is over, wildland firefighters face another threat: suicide.
    Kindness is a bridge between all people

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  25. #75
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    Sep 2011
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    554
    I know I had troubles when the season died down. Mine revolved mostly around waking up in the middle of the night second guessing every decision. I think the problems it causes with family, the addiction to adrenaline, the loss of purpose, the feelings of helplessness you face at times, the fact that many come from other high-risk professions all contribute. But it is something we are only now starting to talk about. Compared to the structural side (which is a low but rising bar depending on where you are) many in the wildland side are still in the dark ages.

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