Letter Re: Evacuating Quickly to Escape Wildfires

JWR: As a former California Department of Forestry (C.D.F. which is now Cal-Fire) wild land firefighter I would like to give some professional advice to persons living in wildfire prone urban interface locations.  The 100 foot clearance required is really a necessity in defending your retreat.  If infrastructure is still up, when told to evacuate, GET OUT ! From a roadway, I once had to listen to the screams of a woman who burned to death because she refused to evacuate her home.  It is a haunting memory. Have an advance plan for safety zones and escape routes.  A safety zone is an area where you could weather the fire without the chance of being burned over as your escape route has been cut off.  A large area, void of vegetation is the best.  Sometimes you might come across grazed over areas or a large rocky area that would suffice.  Gravel…




Letter Re: Evacuating Quickly to Escape Wildfires

…State Forest Service started a prescribed burn in an area southwest of Denver. It was started within the prescription parameters. On Monday the weather changed and the winds were ferocious. Embers were carried out of the fire boundaries and the wildfire nightmare began.  People were notified about a possible evacuation, and evacuating.  However, several structures burned to the ground, two people are confirmed dead, one person is still missing as of this morning.  The fire is nowhere near containment.  More winds are forecast to occur this weekend.   This is not a letter to point fingers and assign blame on the state forest service.  It is a letter to point out that one of the strategies to preparedness is to consider all of the things that may go wrong and plan a response to them.  Wildfire is one thing that can happen in rural areas and people need to plan…