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Wildland fires can be catastrophic for forests but also for homeowners and their property.  Fires are often caused by natural factors, but by far, the largest cause of wildfires is man-related.  Learning about wildfire prevention and what you can do to help will reduce the number of fires.  Preventing forest fires is everyone’s responsibility!  The Northeast Forest Fire Protection Commission's Prevention and Education Working Team (PEWT) offers several ways to take part.  See the Prevention section for more information.



HOT SPOT 

FIRE SEASON SITUATIONAL AWARENESS
Where can I locate detailed wildfire information for specific incidents?

Have you ever wondered where you could obtain more detailed information regarding active wildfires in the United States and Canada? As the wildfire season continues to escalate in the U.S., the website https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/ is a great source of incident information. You can query by state or fire name or simply click on the fire markers in each state to locate a specific incident. You will find up to date incident information, daily situation reports, maps, photos, road closure lists, media releases, community meeting announcements and much more by following additional agency links.


The Natural Resources Canada website: https://cwfis.cfs.nrcan.gc.ca/interactive-map is the go to site for obtaining the latest information regarding Canadian wildfire incidents. You can query active fires and locate them on a map with coordinates, obtain daily national wildland fire situation reports, view statistical information, daily fire danger and fire behavior and outlooks. Valuable links for member agencies will provide you with even more detailed incident information.




HOW TO BE "SAFE" DURING A SMOKEY BEAR EVENT

During the 2020 Coronavirus pandemic, it is difficult to do fire prevention events. However, with more people recreating outdoors (and severe drought in parts of the Northeast), the amount of human caused wildfire has increased.


One idea is to use an inflatable Smokey or a one-dimensional Smokey Bear sign rather than a costume. Follow local social distancing guidelines, wear a face covering and set up a table with Smokey Bear items away from the Smokey Bear display. This keeps the people who want photos with Smokey away from the people near the table. In both photos, the short-duration events were unannounced (to avoid having a large crowd) and held at visitor centers. The table and presenters hands were washed and disinfected often. posting these photos on social media after the event gets Smokey's fire prevention message important exposure.





MAKING A CASE FOR WILDFIRE PREVENTION

Here is the latest video about the advantages of a Fire Prevention Education Team:

The study in Florida stated:

“…if it had been possible to increase spending on wildfire prevention education between 2002-2007, an additional dollar spent on wildfire prevention education in Florida would have reduced wildfire related losses and suppression costs by $35 – a benefit to cost ratio of 35:1. This ratio may not be applicable to other states and prevention programs because of differences in fire regimes, values at risk, and suppression costs.”


www.srs.fs.usda.gov/pubs/38382


Looking at the concept of disaster preparedness, the Dept. of Homeland Security also did a study that suggested …” every dollar spent on disaster preparedness can save $4 in disaster response and recovery costs. For wildfires, the cost-benefit ratio may be even higher.”


www.americanprogress.org/issues/green/reports/2019/07/25/472639/before-the-fire/


Another important consideration is safety. Every fire that is prevented, eliminates the risk of a firefighter getting hurt or killed trying to suppress it.