Entries by RedZone

Wildfire 101- Ten Standard Firefighting Orders

The Ten Standard Firefighting Orders are a set of systematically organized rules designed by the USDA Forest Service to reduce danger to personnel and increase firefighting efficiency. The orders were developed from lessons learned in a number of major wildland fires that led to the deaths of trapped firefighters including the Shoshone National Forest Blackwater […]

Southeast Maui Brush Fire Scorches 5,300 acres

Five separate fires began along Piilani Highway in Kahikinui, Maui, Monday night around 1800 hrs, according to fire officials. Areas downwind of the quickly-spreading blaze were promptly evacuated as flames forced the closure of Piilani Highway over a four-mile stretch. RZAlert Dashboard view of Maui’s 5,300 acre blaze. The firefight continued this week as local crews […]

Wildfire 101: The Fire Triangle and The Fire Tetrahedron

There are three components needed to start a fire: fuel, oxygen, and heat. This is commonly referred to as the fire triangle. If any one of the components is missing, a fire cannot occur.  Artist’s rendition of the Fire Triangle – Source: USFWS Alaska The Fire Triangle is a simple way of understanding the three elements […]

Fire Danger Signs: What Do They Really Mean?

Ever been driving along a highway, spotted a Fire Danger Sign, and wondered what it is truly indicating? Fire Danger is a description of the combination of both constant and variable factors that affect the initiation, spread, and difficulty to control a wildfire in a given area. There are many systems and schemes that attempt […]

Texas’ Significant Wildfire Potential

According to Texas Forest Service’s Dispatch Tracker, the weekend produced multiple red flag warnings and 20 new fires totalling over 1,700 burned acres in the State of Texas. Despite the weekend’s elevated fire weather conditions and activity, Texas’ wildfire potential remains normal to below normal into early summer.   February’s Significant Wildfire Potential WILDFIRE POTENTIAL OUTLOOK FOR TEXAS  […]

Fuel Reduction Practices and Purpose

The practice of hazardous fuel reduction is most often associated with moderating the flammable vegetation around the defensible space of individual homes and communities. But this proactive approach to fighting wildland fire comes in many other forms and, unlike fire-fighting in most areas, is a year-round practice.    Ridgeline fuel break example on the left and a road brushing/shaded […]

It’s Prescribed Fire Season

In many wildland areas, smoke can often be seen throughout the winter. More than likely, this is not due to uncontrolled wildfire, but rather prescribed fires that are started when the weather is less conducive to catastrophic burns, allowing firefighters and crews to prepare for when wildfire season picks up again.     A Rx fire (controlled pile burning) I helped ignite […]

Smoke Color Can Depict Fuel Type

Smoke is made up of particulates, aerosols and gases, and identifying the characteristics of each in a given smoke plume can be helpful when fighting fires. Reading smoke can tell a firefighter what is currently happening with a fire as well as what might happen in the future. One particularly important factor in predicting fire behavior is the color of […]