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Why Do We Fight Forest Fires?  
User currently offlineIowaman From United States of America, joined May 2004, 4416 posts, RR: 6
Posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 6056 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
FORUM MODERATOR

The U.S. spends $2.5 billion fighting forest fires every year. Why?? Because some hoosier has his/her house in the woods? It's part of natures' way to clear out the forests that have old rotting trees. If we are fighting these fires and keep putting them out one of these times the fire is going to go out of control and be much worse because there is so much that hasn't burned in the past. I think if you choose to build a house in the woods that's part of the risks living there, such as living in the midwest when there is tornadoes, flood prone areas along rivers, etc. Why not just evacuate the people. I think that $2.5B could go to better use.

28 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineNewark777 From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 9348 posts, RR: 29
Reply 1, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 6050 times:

Try telling that to the homeowners, and see if you get a positive response. I doubt anyone would let their house burn just because it is part of nature.

Harry



Why grab a Heine when you can grab a Busch?
User currently offlineThom@s From Norway, joined Oct 2000, 11953 posts, RR: 46
Reply 2, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 6049 times:

I think it has something to do with the fact that a forest fire could potentially burn down the entire west coast of America. I don't think the city of LA (i.e.) would care much for letting mother nature burn down their houses to clean up the forest and get rid of some old trees.  Wink

Also, wouldn't it cost more to build up a small town after it's been burned down, than to fight the fire before it reaches civilization?  Confused

Thom@s



"If guns don't kill people, people kill people - does that mean toasters don't toast toast, toast toast toast?"
User currently offlineAirlinerfreak From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 6041 times:

Actually the thing that I find with L.A. is that most people actually care about the little nature we actually have. Also, the Insurance companies wouldnt like it much if we burned down a whole forest with million dollar houses in it.

User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29802 posts, RR: 58
Reply 4, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 6032 times:

Well you have to look back in history a bit.

Back in the 1920's and 30's there where several big fires that litterally wiped out entire towns. So fire gained a reputation as being a bad thing.

So through the 1950's till about 10 years ago we got very good at putting out fires, which is why the forests in this country are in terrible shape. Ever watch a John Wayne filme from the 1950's? ever notice how much more open the country is compared to today where those woods are full of deadfall and snags? Fire is what cleaned it out.

So what happens now is you have a fuel rich wood, and when a fire starts it is really big and really destrucive.

Most forest firefighters are there to control where the fire goes, and to protect structures. If you compare fires in the lower 48, where population density is much greater compared to fires in say Alaska, sort of a fire in a populated area of Alaska, you will see a lot of remote fires up here only being aircraft monitored, or if they are a manned fire, a crew that is many 1/10th the size of a crew used on a smaller fire in the lower 48.

Now there is a trade-off, last year we had some 6.8 million acres of land burn up here, here was the 2nd or 3rd worst recorded fire season.



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offlineVSLover From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 1897 posts, RR: 22
Reply 5, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 6025 times:

Quoting Iowaman (Thread starter):
It's part of natures' way to clear out the forests that have old rotting trees

you mean like the many many forest fires started by dumb humans who dont know how to control his/her fires or how to properly extinguish a fire before leaving a wooded site?

thats not nature, thats stupidity, and many many forest fires are a result of pure human idiocy.


User currently offlineJGPH1A From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 6023 times:

So how do you like your innocent bystanders ? Regular or extra-crispy ?

I think most forest fires are fought to save lives and property, rather than saving the actual forest. We have a serious bush/forest fire problem down here, a lot of them arson-related, and the poor sappeurs-pompiers spend their whole time trying to prevent holiday homes (and sometimes villages) from going up. The forest itself seems to be a secondary consideration.


User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29802 posts, RR: 58
Reply 7, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 6018 times:

Quoting VSLover (Reply 5):
you mean like the many many forest fires started by dumb humans who dont know how to control his/her fires or how to properly extinguish a fire before leaving a wooded site?

Actually up here, most of the fires that start are lightening strikes.



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offlineKYIPpilot From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 1383 posts, RR: 6
Reply 8, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 6003 times:

http://www.dof.virginia.gov/fire/fire-causes.shtml

Most forest fires in VA were human caused. Also read that 99% of forest fires in NJ were caused by people.

People cause more fires than nature.



"It starts when you're always afraid; You step out of line, the man come and take you away" -Buffalo Springfield
User currently offlineAirlinerfreak From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 6001 times:

Quoting L-188 (Reply 7):
Actually up here, most of the fires that start are lightening strikes.



Quoting KYIPpilot (Reply 8):
People cause more fires than nature.

Don't forget he is up in Alaska where they have yet to put up a stopsign. I would be surprised if they even have matches up there yet.


User currently offlinePe@rson From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 19236 posts, RR: 52
Reply 10, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 6001 times:

Quoting JGPH1A (Reply 6):
So how do you like your innocent bystanders ?

Burn JPG! GO ONBig grin



"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
User currently offlineJGPH1A From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 5989 times:

Quoting Pe@rson (Reply 10):
Burn JPG! GO ON!

I don't need to burn - when you're hot, you're hot !


User currently offlinePe@rson From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 19236 posts, RR: 52
Reply 12, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 5988 times:

Quoting JGPH1A (Reply 11):
when you're hot, you're hot !

Thank you, thank you.



"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
User currently offlineJGPH1A From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 5982 times:

Quoting Pe@rson (Reply 12):
Thank you, thank you.

How much of that Advocaat 'n curacao have you had ? I was talking about ME, foolish boy.


User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29802 posts, RR: 58
Reply 14, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 5966 times:

Quoting Airlinerfreak (Reply 9):
Don't forget he is up in Alaska where they have yet to put up a stopsign.

hahaha, Actually ever stop sign in the state is between me and where I work Big grin


Actually they put in three traffic circles up here, haven't had the pleasure of reliving European driving yet.



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offlineAirlinerfreak From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 5958 times:

OMG, are you serious, that place up North is actually starting to become a part of America. Tell me when you get your first trafficl light.

User currently offlineAGC525 From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 989 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 5945 times:

So if your house is struck by lightining, us firemen should let it burn because it's nature? That's one of the most rediculous things I've heard on here.

Firefighters priorities:
Protect life
Protect property



American Aviation: From Kitty Hawk to the Moon in 66 years!
User currently offlineAirlinerfreak From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 5937 times:

What about protecting your life? Since you seem like a firefighter I have always been curious about this as you always hear of firefighter deaths and injuries when they're fires.

User currently offlineIowaman From United States of America, joined May 2004, 4416 posts, RR: 6
Reply 18, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 5925 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
FORUM MODERATOR

Quoting KYIPpilot (Reply 8):
Also read that 99% of forest fires in NJ were caused by people.

Ok, but the big ones in Alaska and the western U.S. are caused by lightning a good chunk of the time.

Quoting AGC525 (Reply 16):
So if your house is struck by lightining, us firemen should let it burn because it's nature? That's one of the most rediculous things I've heard on here.

No, but your house getting struck by lightning is another one of those things the mother nature does. They should come put it out, but the five miles between you and the house that needs to burn they should put out to? If you don't let this stuff burn for 50 years by constantly putting fire out, then it gets out of control. It's going to be much worse than if it burned 10 years ago. I think a lot of these people just need to clear brush away from there house, and it wouldn't be quite such a problem. We wouldn't have these rageing fires with flames 200 feet high if there had been a fire 10 years ago and cleared everything else instead of 50 years ago. That's sorta like when you live in California, you take the risk of an Earthquake, except there isn't anything to prevent that. So basically you build stronger buildings to withstand earthquakes. Fire clears out forests of old trees and wood, and that should be the way it is. Just clear the trees and brush that's a few hundered feet around your house away, instead of trying to keep any fire from starting.


User currently offlineAirlinerfreak From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 5914 times:

Quoting Iowaman (Reply 18):
Ok, but the big ones in Alaska and the western U.S. are caused by lightning a good chunk of the time.

I beg to differ. The major fires in California this past fire season were because of one committing arson. The real bad ones at least. Rarely, do we see lightning in the middle of summer. Also that real bad San Diego fire was caused by arson.


User currently offlinePROSA From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 5644 posts, RR: 4
Reply 20, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day ago) and read 5897 times:

Ignore forest fires? Why, that would put Smokey the Bear out of a job!


"Let me think about it" = the coward's way of saying "no"
User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13138 posts, RR: 15
Reply 21, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 1 day ago) and read 5879 times:

A growing problem has been more and more people wanting, able or having to live in areas that are adjacent to major, protected wooded areas.
Since the early 1900's, growing areas of the USA have been protected or limited in access and lumber harvesting and become overly protected from fire. As more people are living in or developing areas that were just woods and became over the years overly protected with agressive fire fighting and prevention from human sources, it makes it necessary to fight these forrest fires. Many homes built in risky areas until recent years were not constructed to reduce the risk of fire, using wood shingles, flamable roofing materials and keeping too much of the woods too close to the house (mainly to stay within enviromental rules).
Another reason to fight forest fires, it that the destruction too much wooded areas may lead to erosion, flooding and damage of the woods themselves and developed areas.


User currently offlineThom@s From Norway, joined Oct 2000, 11953 posts, RR: 46
Reply 22, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 11 hours ago) and read 5845 times:

Slightly off topic, but i just came to think of something.

At Bergen airport, Flesland, they have a painting with some key moments in the city's history printed under it. Not totally accurate but it looks more or less like this:

1805: Fire burns down the city.
1807: Fire burns down the city.
1810: Mr smith becomes mayor.
1811: Fire burns down the city.
1812: Fire burns down the city.
1814: Fire burns down the city.
1819: Bergen no longer capital of Norway.
1821: Fire burns down the city.
1823: Famous writer publishes controversial book.
1827: Fire burns down the city.
1829: Ship sinks outside the harbour killing 47.
1830: Fire burns down the city.
1831: Fire burns down the city.
1834: Fire burns down the city.
1835: The black death reaches Norway.
1847: Fire burns down the city.
1852: Fire burns down the city.
1856: Fire burns down the city.
1857: Fire burns down the city.
1858: Bergen Fire department is established.
1897: Edvard Grieg composes Peer Gynt.
1945: WWII ends.
1994: norway hosts winter olympics.
1999: Fire is put out in garbage can.
2004: List of the city's history hung up in airport.

Thom@s Big grin



"If guns don't kill people, people kill people - does that mean toasters don't toast toast, toast toast toast?"
User currently offlineNavymidn From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 188 posts, RR: 1
Reply 23, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 7 hours ago) and read 5826 times:

Speaking as someone who lives in a high risk area during the summer (Mayfield, Idaho), which happens to be a rural area, there are a lot of reasons fires are put out. For one thing, at least in my area, the majority of the economy is based on ranching and logging. For the people who make their money this way, a loss of land is devastating to their lives. I have seen the results of major fires, and have even helped to put out a few, usually large grass fires. It is not just houses that people build that causes fires to be put out, it is people's economic lives. And maybe when we no longer want timber or beef, maybe we can just let fires burn.
Also, as far as the clearing of the brush goes, the BLM and Forest Service conduct "controled burns" during the non peak fire season to accomplish that goal. In addition, loggers often cut old growth trees, so that the new growth comes in, just like a fire would cause.

Navymidn

P.S. My house has been threatened by a fire, and I am very glad we put out that blaze before we had a test of the cleared area around the house.



Law is a major base of civilized society
User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29802 posts, RR: 58
Reply 24, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 3 hours ago) and read 5809 times:

Quoting Thom@s (Reply 22):
1805: Fire burns down the city.
1807: Fire burns down the city.
1810: Mr smith becomes mayor.
1811: Fire burns down the city.
1812: Fire burns down the city.
1814: Fire burns down the city.
1819: Bergen no longer capital of Norway.
1821: Fire burns down the city.
1823: Famous writer publishes controversial book.
1827: Fire burns down the city.
1829: Ship sinks outside the harbour killing 47.
1830: Fire burns down the city.
1831: Fire burns down the city.
1834: Fire burns down the city.
1835: The black death reaches Norway.
1847: Fire burns down the city.
1852: Fire burns down the city.
1856: Fire burns down the city.
1857: Fire burns down the city.
1858: Bergen Fire department is established.
1897: Edvard Grieg composes Peer Gynt.
1945: WWII ends.
1994: norway hosts winter olympics.
1999: Fire is put out in garbage can.
2004: List of the city's history hung up in airport.

He he, damm too bad my brother went back home today, he is with the local VFD in that town and has done EFF red card work for forestry, he would get a kick out of that.



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
25 Bill142 : Well when they get out of control they can wipe out entire suburbs and cause lots of environmental damage which can take years to recover. Google Canb
26 Post contains images Lehpron : Normally I'd say let them burn. But since most fires start because of some smart guy that threw a cig out the window along a road... Which proves huma
27 Yyz717 : Forest fires are a natural part of nature. They thin out a forest and combust much of the excess wood. Fewer small fires means greater huge ones. Argu
28 AR1300 : With all the due respect, this the stupidest thing I 've ever heard. Why fight fire?Maybe... because is dangerous?Duh. I think 1 live it's worth more
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