By definition, tragedy fires aren’t tragic until fire physics intersects with the human factors typical of a firefighter’s engagement with the fire. Here’s the summary of human factors on tragedy fires observed and synthesized by Matt Holmstrom — offered not as a checklist but as a toolset for cautionary reflection.
A nurse who focuses on firefighter injuries, Hotshot crews, and first-responder helitack firefighters receive Wildfire Emergency Medical Service Awards
How research has helped to understand what is in the smoke of rural/urban interface fires.
A comparative study of fire fatalities and training asks how we might improve training and improve safety too.
A sampling of topics and presentations from IAWF’s upcoming conference, “Managing Fire, Understanding Ourselves: Human Dimensions in Safety and Wildland Fire.” We share these previews here and in selected articles throughout this issue of Wildfire Magazine.
This article is the second in a series by Ivan Pupulidy that explores the changing procedures and safety culture in the wildland fire profession. The first article, “Recognize error to prevent accidents,” was published in the August 2014 issue. Pupulidy is the Director of the US Forest Service Office of Learning.
To build resilience into our systems and success into our safety toolkit, a “student of fire” (and our firefighting systems) must embrace error as an opportunity to learn. Accident investigations have changed as new research and understanding of complex systems has emerged. The US Forest Service has replaced accident investigation with the Learning Review process, […]
By Richard C McCrea On the afternoon of June 30, 2013, nineteen firefighters perished in a major fire blowup on the Yarnell Hill Fire (YH). This blaze occurred on a rugged steep mountain range in heavy brush fuels, near the town of Yarnell, Arizona. The firefighters that were entrapped and burned over were from the […]
The Pattern On the Dude Fire in Arizona, 1990, 6 firefighters died in their fire shelters while trying to save homes. On the Esperanza Fire in California, 2006, 5 Forest Service firefighters from Engine 57 died while trying to save the unoccupied Octagon House. On the Yarnell Hill Fire in Arizona, 2013, 19 firefighters from […]
Good question. When fire behavior becomes threatening, wildland firefighters disengage the fire and travel along escape routes to reach safety zones to avoid being entrapped or burned-over. In spite of the fact that the concept of escape routes has been a formally recognized element of wildland firefighter safety for almost 55 years, there is surprisingly […]