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Two Bulls firefighting army will reduce soon

By Femi Abebefe
Published On: Jun 11 2014 01:57:12 AM CDT
Updated On: Jun 11 2014 02:02:32 AM CDT

With the fire well-contained, officials project scaling back resources soon, NewsChannel 21's Femi Abebefe reports from fire camp.

BEND, Ore. -

A fire like Two Bulls requires carefully organized resources. I visited the fire camp this evening to learn what's used and how, and as we continue to knock down this fire, officials expect a reduction in those resources.

"That’s just kind of the natural flow of a fire,” said Two Bulls Fire Operations Chief Joe Hessel. “We ramp up as it builds up in size, and then we'll hit a peak generally some place in the middle. And as we begin to meet our objectives, we'll eventually ramp back down."

Hessel said we're in the middle of that peak. He attributes the firefighting effort's positive progress to the fire's early timing -- worrisome in some ways, helpful in others.

"As we've asked for Type 1 or Type 2 crews, we've asked for engines, aircraft, even local resources like (bull)dozers and water tenders, there's not a lot of competition for those resources," Hessel said.

With more than 1,000 crew members on the fire and a handful of resources like dozers and engines, Hessel said which resource is typically first to go.

"Usually, it's the line building equipment,” Hessel said. “So once we're finished constructing the line, for instance, with the bulldozers we have, we won't need them any more."

Even after the fire is completely knocked down, there's still work to be done. That’s when local incident management teams step back up, to monitor the area. 

"They'll continue to work this fire after we're gone,” Hessel said. “It could be three to five days to maybe another couple weeks, to ensure that everything we put in place is going to stay."

Hessel said there's no way the fire could be under any sort of containment without the hard work of all those involved.

"Thanks to the community and the partners that we have working here,” Hessel said. “This is a well-educated and  averse community when it comes to wildfire. The agencies have all been super-supportive."

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