Firefighters Changed Approach After Destructive ’93 CA Wildfire

The destruction caused by the 1993 Green Meadow wildfire in California caused firefighters to shift their approach to wildland firefighting in the area.

Driven by the Santa Ana winds, the Green Meadow fire destroyed 53 homes and consumed 44,000 acres, according to a report from the Los Angeles Times (http://lat.ms/10dTYZj). It caught firefighters unprepared, and the lessons learned from the fire is affecting how firefighters are battling the massive Springs fire in Ventura County.

“With this fire, having experienced Green Meadow, our commanding officers realized much sooner that we were not going to get ahead of this fire,” Captain Scott Dettorre told reporters. “Consequently, we were able to put plans in place to minimize damage to a much greater extent. It is the lessons of Green Meadow that is allowing us to do what we are doing out here.”

That approach has enabled firefighters to protect numerous threatened structures and confined the wildfire to rugged wildland areas.

Read additional details about this story at http://lat.ms/10dTYZj.

For more on firefighting in the wildland-urban interface, consider NIST Study Offers First Detailed Look at the Progress of a Wildland-Urban Fire, Wildland Urban Interface: Ensuring the “Defensibility” of Defensible Space, and Wildland Urban Interface Fires: Managing a Cascade of Risk.

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