Wildfire Season, North America 2016

Wildfire Season, North America 2016

Just as another terrible wild re season is upon Canada and the US, the Utah Department of Natural Resources’ newly developed, interactive site — www.utahwilfirerisk.com — allows users to search for and zoom into particular neighborhoods or recreation areas on a statewide map to see the wild re risk in that zone.

It’s essentially the Google Maps of state wildfires, said the Salt Lake Tribune Friday.

North American Wildfires 2016

The idea behind the state wildfire map is prevention. The site pulls in state and federal data to create a “risk assessment portal” where the public can generate a report detailing how to reduce fire danger near homes, such as by removing excess vegetation.

Anyone is going to be able to access information to learn more about the threat of wildfire, the risk of wildfire and what the impacts might be in their communities.

The map’s resolution is a slightly lower quality than Google Maps, meaning the site generalizes data over broader areas. One pixel on the wild- fire map encompasses a 90 x 90 foot area, or 30 meters, while Google’s is about six inches.

The state partnered with geospatial developer Timmons Group to create the US$250,000 site.

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US Wildfire Wrap up

Federal officials say 27 large wildfires are burning in the US West this week. Hot, dry temperatures often combined with winds have made firefighting conditions difficult, destroying homes and forcing evacuations. Here’s a look at some of the fires burning Wednesday:

WASHINGTON

Residents have been allowed to return to their homes after a 5-square-mile wildfire prompted the evacuation of about two dozen homes in central Washington.

A fire spokesperson, Trooper Jeff Sevigney, says the blaze about 7 miles north of Moses Lake burned less land than initially thought but destroyed two homes and six outbuildings.

Officials say a large wildfire in south-central Washington has scorched about 275 square miles of brush and grassland and was expect- ed to be contained on Thursday.

CALIFORNIA

Authorities are considering potential penalties for whoever set an illegal campfire that ballooned into a massive wildfire near scenic Big Sur in California.

Officials want the public’s help in finding whoever started the fire that has charred almost 73 square miles and destroyed 57 homes.

A bulldozer operator was killed on the fire lines during a rollover accident.

To the north, a grass fire in a popular recreational area north of San Francisco has more than doubled in size in less than a day.

The blaze has charred more than 7 square miles in Napa, Yolo and Solano counties since igniting Tuesday. It prompted the evacuation of an RV and tent campground off Highway 128 near Lake Berryessa.

IDAHO

Firefighters are setting up sprinkler systems to protect buildings in the central Idaho town of Lowman as a wildfire expand- ed to 75 square miles.

Nearly 1,500 firefighters are battling the blaze burning timber in rugged terrain.

Officials say slightly cooler weather and winds from the north-west should help firefighters trying to prevent flames from reaching the small town.

Fire spokesperson Jennifer Myslivy says no evacuations have been ordered.

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US Wildfires 2016

OREGON

A wildfire burning southwest of Crater Lake spread to nearly 800 acres, prompting an evacuation warning for some parts of Crater Lake National Park. Fire spokesperson Lucinda Nolan said crews are trying to keep the fire east of Pacific Crest Trail and west of Crater Lake Rim Drive. The park remained open.

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