This page is continuously being added to and revised when possible. If you have a local breaking fire news story (region 6 area), or beneficial fire/forestry related element that you think should be on here, please send your news or suggestion to firstname.lastname@example.org - We welcome and value your input into how we can better serve you with our organization.
Visible Satellite Image from 08/12/2018 showing north-central Oregon. Note the large scale burn scars visible from space. I've put an arrow (13 of them) to help separate individual fires, as many have burned together. For reference, the river at the top is the Columbia River, the green mountains at lower right are the Ochoco Mountains, and the green farm lands above that is Umatilla area.
Each year, thousands of of wildland firefighters like myself choose to put their lives and families on hold to battle wildfires across the continent. Many of us have other jobs, hobbies, and lifestyles that we choose to abandon for the summer months in order to serve our duty as on call firefighters. We never know when that call is going to come in, but we are always ready for it. We do it because we love the job.
Our families have to put their lives on hold too. Us firefighters tell our families that we must stay close to the phone and be ready at a moments notice. “Sorry sweetie, can't go camping! There's no cell phone signal out there and I have to be ready to go..” he tells his daughter. Our families support us because they know it's a job we love and is a service that is needed. As wildland firefighters, our greatest support comes from the love, compassion, and understanding that we receive from our family and friends. It means a lot to us knowing that we are appreciated. The thanks we get does go a long way and for that, we in turn thank you; our family and friends. Without your support, we could not do this job.
Two more firefighters were killed yesterday. Two more firefighters' families are devastated today. When tragedy like this strikes the wildland firefighting community, the sense of loss reverberates throughout all families and firefighters who make the sacrifice every summer. What can be even worse, is that many seasonal wildland firefighters don't have any type of life insurance policy or pension, or anything that the surviving family can receive to help with the financial burden of losing a dad or mom, son or daughter. This has been a problem for seasonal employees in the wildland firefighting industry since the beginning of time. There is, however, an organization called the “Wildland Firefighter Foundation” that was set up to address this problem. It is a solid, non-profit organization that helps with supporting the costs associated with firefighter deaths in the wildland community. Please donate, even if it's just a dollar. Many of us firefighters make up the majority of donations this organization receives because most people outside of the fire community don't know about it. But now you do. Please share this with your friends and help the families out with your support and donations. It's our families that make the greatest sacrifice every summer, wishing dad was home grilling steaks on 4th of July, or wishing mom was at that camping trip in August. The Wildland Firefighter Foundation helps the families out when someone doesn't make it home from the fireline. Please help, please share.
To our families who ultimately make the greatest sacrifice by having to put your lives on hold every summer- we love you and are so grateful for your love and support; Thank you.
The ERC: Energy release component. The energy release component (ERC) is a number related to the available energy (BTU) per unit area (square foot) within the flaming front at the head of a fire. Daily variations in ERC are due to changes in moisture content of the various fuels present, both live and dead.
Fuel moisture: is a measure of the amount of water in a fuel (vegetation) available to a fire, and is expressed as a percent of the dry weight of that specific fuel. For example, if a fuel were totally dry, the fuel moisture content would be zero percent.
Pictures from the South Junction Fire, Oregon. Copyright Peakforestry.com
PO Box 632
Bend, Oregon 97709
"Ultimately, leadership is not about glorious crowning acts. It's about keeping your team focused on a goal and motivated to do their best to achieve it, especially when the stakes are high and the consequences really matter. It is about laying the groundwork for others' success, and then standing back and letting them shine."