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Thread: Wildfire

  1. #1
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    Mar 2009
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    Default Wildfire

    About 3-4 miles from my place. Dang it. Wind seems to be west and my place is southwest. Rough terrain but some less heavily wooded areas between. They are bringing in the DC-10 to lay fire retardant lines.

    A thunderstorm will be a problem this afternoon. Little rain, lots of wind.

    The first big bastrop fire lost 3000 homes. They almost did better on the second but lost control. It flared up and was another disaster. Lost about 5-8 acres of (my) forest to that one.

    Hoping the last decade has been enough for them to get their act together. The permanent basing of the DC-10 tanker was smart.

    I am not fire ready yet. Too much forest; too close to the building. And my barn door shutters are not done yet. Shoot.
    Last edited by bluedog225; 08-12-2022 at 12:11 PM.

  2. #2
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    Sep 2003
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    Port of Lorain,Ohio
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    23,897

    Thumbs down Re: Wildfire

    Just what ya need, a fire to warm things up.
    Keep calm, persistence beats resistance.

  3. #3
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    Sep 2014
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    Tom,

    Any way you can cover the vents in your home before the fire gets close? I have heard about many structures in CA that have burned from the inside because sparks blew into the vents.

    Good luck and stay safe!

  4. #4
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    St. Helens, Oregon
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    Good luck and pray for a wind change!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    We've been evacuated three times, but suffered no damage.

    It might be good to set up sprinklers and turn them on to wet down the house and nearby veg. They often shut off the electricity in fire hazard zones, so sooner is better.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    I covered all the soffit vents with metal screen when built. One of those details they didn’t care for. Hoping that helps. Lots of area to water. They may bring in the bulldozers if it gets too close as they did last time. There are 3 stationed down the road. I need to think through a sprinkler defense. I really need to move the woods back 25 feet on one side. The others have good clearance. Hard work.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Wildfire


  8. #8
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    Aug 2002
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    Good luck, that’s getting close.


    I have some property (bare land, no structures) on the Salmon River in Idaho that the Moose fire burned over. The fire is still burning at about 75,000 acres now, 21% containment. I went down there for a look, and with remarkably coincidental timing, got there just as the fire burned through the property and flames were making it down to the water’s edge.

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    Tragically, about a week earlier a Chinook firefighting helicopter crashed into the river while doing bucket operations. Both pilots died of their injuries. I was stopped at the site for a while for a road closure. They were bringing in some equipment for the two large cranes that were being set up to extract the wreckage. What makes it even more tragic is that fire has been determined to be human-caused and is still under investigation.

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  9. #9
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    Shame about the crash. When I fought wildfires with the Forest Service we had our lives saved a few times by a well-aimed drop of retardant. The aircraft were twin-engine military ships, Douglas B-26, that came in really close to the deck— very risky flying. Sometimes the retardant wasn't fully mixed and we got hit with big chunks, like bowling balls. Ouch!
    Last edited by Chip-skiff; 08-14-2022 at 12:27 AM.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    Quote Originally Posted by Chip-skiff View Post
    Shame about the crash. When I fought wildfires with the Forest Service we had our lives saved a few times by a well-aimed drop of retardant. The aircraft were twin-engine military ships, Douglas B-26, that came in really close to the deck— very risky flying. Sometimes the retardant wasn't fully mixed and we got hit with big chunks, like bowling balls. Ouch!
    Yeah, back in the day …

    I worked a few seasons on a FS fire crew, mostly doing hand-line work. Sometimes a few of us would get heli’d out for initial attack on small lightning starts. Those were my favorite fires to work on -- small crew, making your own assessment and response, usually 1-3 days in some remote place you’d not likely ever see otherwise. The heli rides were always thrilling and somewhat terrifying since I don’t really care for flying in a machine. Most of the pilots then were ‘Nam vets and would often find some excuse to take a ‘sporty’ route for a look around.

    Our crew boss was real gung-ho and liked to call in retardant drops right at our location. He seemed to think it was a badge of honor of sorts to return to fire camp painted with the pink goo. Got splattered quite a few times. Yeah, it can hurt!

    There used to be a few B-17 tankers flying fires in those days, in fact our crew occasionally got stuck assisting with retardant loading duty at the airbase and sometimes a B-17 would be there for loading. DC-3’s too. Cool to be up close to those old birds.

    I’ll never forget being on a ridgetop on a fire in NE Cali, watching a B-17 as it made a spectacular dive, then a treetop-skimming climb up the ridgeline right towards our position. I expected they were going to make the drop down the ridge a ways. Nope, kept on coming … and whoosh! Nailed us. Blew my hardhat off.

    I’ve fantasized about riding in the nose of a B-17, diving down and skimming the tree tops into an inferno, feel the plane release the load, climb out and bank away for a look back. Return to base. Change shorts. Repeat. Or not.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    Bluedog, how is it going with the fire near your place?

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    Quote Originally Posted by J P View Post
    Bluedog, how is it going with the fire near your place?

    Yes, any news?

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    45% contained. Not hearing about adverse conditions (wind).

    Back at the first big fire (2011), state didn’t have any of those assets listed above. Had to rent them from places like California. I forget the number, but it was extraordinarily expensive. And took a week or longer to get it all arranged. Then the big DC-10 sat for a day or two because the pilots were over hours. It was a big mess.

    Somebody got their act together and it looks like we own the large tanker and the “very large tanker.” It’s based somewhere around here with refilling station, etc. I bet they have the Texas guard pilots hooked into the flight ops as well. Much better response times. I think they surrounded the fire with zones of retardant.

    I went out there yesterday and felt ridiculous with a hose. Would need acre feet of water to make a difference.

    I feel for those guys firefighting in this heat.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    Stringing a mist sprinkler hose around the edge of your roof or deck is a worthwhile precaution.

    Good luck!

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    Do you have water tanks?
    A sprinkler on the ridge of your house, water collects in the drains and recirculates back into the tanks. Good to create little dams in your gutters so they have a few milimeters of water in them. A huge cause of ember attack fires is the embers blowing up under your roofing from the gutters. Keeping the gutters wet is one of the single best things you can do.

    With water tanks you need a generator and a pump. You can have it all set up permanently and fire it off and leave the house. It'll look after itself till it runs out of petrol or water.

    Mow all grass and brush as tight as possible.

    My house is zoned flame zone. I recently tried to do some reno's - had to cancel. The costs to meet code are unbelievable. Council clearly prefers us to live in a tinderbox than make incremental improvements. Our house basically has to be made of steel, with steel shutters on every window. Minimum 2mm tolerances is the code standard for all window or door frames. No trees or overhanging branches within 10m of the house (Asset Protection Zone). Peeing in the wind, there's Eucalyptus forest for about 70km between me and the source of fires where i live - right up to my front door. Eucalypts can fire off giant flame balls of burning eucalyptus oil for kilometers.
    It's all fun and games until Darth Vader comes.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    Living in rural coastal BC Canada , forests are the norm but the increasingly hot springs and summers are not as it is in most of the world . Our house is surrounded by 2nd growth fir trees some up to 75 ft tall within 30 ft of the house ....it's not good if a fire takes off here . In 42 years of living here there have been 5 lightning strikes within 1/2 mile , this area infrequently gets thunderstorms .

    More than 17,830 lightning strikes hit the province as thunderstorms swept through B.C. between Aug. 10 and Aug. 13 2022 , those strikes reportedly started 140 forest fires .

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Wildfire

    Thank the lord. We have not had rain in a looooong time. I am willing this storm to move south. Seems to be working.

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