OSU Policy Analysis Lab and WFCA’s Applied Sciences Center Collaborate to Enhance Wildfire Resiliency by Advancing Social Science Research

Author: Western Fire Chiefs Association
Published: 11/14/2023
WFCA's Board of Directors is committed to advancing progress on mitigation and building resiliency to wildfire across our communities. The recently published report from the Wildland Fire Mitigation and Management Commission (WFMMC) outlines 148 recommendations to Congress, aiming to address the escalating wildfire crisis that endangers communities nationwide. In line with this commitment, WFCA's Applied Sciences Center is excited to announce a strategic partnership with Oregon State University's Policy Analysis Lab (OPAL) to advance social science research focused at mitigating the disparate impacts of wildfires on socially vulnerable communities.     read more

Cellular Coverage - A Public Safety Issue

Author: Jeffrey D. Johnson, Executive Director, Western Fire Chiefs Association
Published: 8/22/2023
The general public is reliant on their cell phones for nearly everything. The public’s demand for real-time data is driven by their daily experiences, and when public safety doesn’t meet those expectations, they are critical and vocal. In times of emergency, they will anticipate receiving meaningful information through their phones. As a public safety chief, the time has come to fully embrace your role in advocating for and improving cellular coverage. Read on to learn how you can identify locations where your department needs cellular coverage.     read more

From Paradise to Paradise, What Have We Learned?

Author: Mark Niemeyer, WFCA President & Fire Chief, Boise Fire Department
Published: 8/17/2023
As I watched the tragic wildfires unfold on Maui, I reflected on the 2018 Camp Fire that swept through Paradise, California. Both fires are recognized for the significant loss of life and property, the profound sense of community and ‘ohana, as well as the daunting challenges of recovery for the communities impacted. The Camp Fire rallied an abundance of emergency resources in a short amount of time, whereas Maui faces resource constraints due to the island’s geographical limitations. The response challenges of these two incidents illustrate that multiple initiatives working in tandem are requisite for reducing loss from Urban Interface fires.     read more

WFCA and Cal Poly’s WUI FIRE Institute Form Collaborative Alliance

Author: Western Fire Chiefs Association
Published: 8/15/2023
The WFCA's Applied Sciences Center (ASC) and the Wildland-Urban Interface FIRE Institute at California State Polytechnic University at San Luis Obispo (Cal Poly WUI Institute) have established a synergistic alliance to help create the most fire resilient communities in the world. Our WUI communities are facing, and will continue to face for decades to come, extraordinary wildfire threats from a perfect storm of ecologic, economic, and climatologic forces. Our organizations have a shared mission, experience, and the humility to recognize the complexity and consequential magnitude of the WUI problem, one requiring the recruitment of expertise outside of ourselves.     read more

WFCA Launches Applied Sciences Center for Resilience Studies to Bridge Research and Practice

Author: Western Fire Chiefs Association
Published: 8/09/2023
WFCA is taking a pioneering step in its mission to lead, educate, support, and protect by unveiling the Applied Sciences Center for Resilience Studies (ASC). The ASC creates a nexus between research and practice, fostering collaborations among communities, government bodies, industries, and academia to enhance society and community resilience through robust research and development initiatives. Backed by funding from NASA, the ASC's initial undertaking will concentrate on advancing wildfire technology and the decision-making processes during the critical first 24 hours of a fire in the Wildland-Urban Interface.     read more

Aerial Firefighting: A Vital and Indispensable Component of Fighting Wildfire

Author: Paul Petersen, Executive Director, United Aerial Firefighters Association
Published: 7/21/2023
The United Aerial Firefighters Association (UAFA) is the only trade association dedicated to all types of aerial firefighting – prioritizing safety, effectiveness, innovation, and collaboration within the community. It aims to educate policymakers and legislators about critical industry concerns, fostering communication and collaboration among firefighting organizations, industry players, and stakeholders. By engaging with members and governmental entities at all levels, UAFA strives to promote the safety and effectiveness of aerial firefighting operations.     read more

WFCA Announces New Podcast: Fire Headlines

Author: Bob Horton, WFCA Deputy Director
Published: 5/23/2023
What happens when you combine the most popular fire service news with commentary from two experienced fire chiefs, our “outsider view” host, and additional subject matter experts? You get bold conversations, data-informed insights, and a timely assessment of current trends. This is Fire Headlines, a new podcast brought to you by the Western Fire Chiefs Association. Chief Jeff Buchanan and I aim to unpack the events, technologies, and changes in today’s fire service, with guidance from our host, Inanna Hencke. We hope you will join us for the discussion.     read more

Emergency Technical Decon and Cool Clean Technologies Confirm Lithium Battery Fire Contaminants Cleaned from PPE

Author: Chief Mike Duyck (Ret.), President, Emergency Technical Decon
Published: 5/01/2023
Lithium-ion battery (LIB) fires are hazardous to communities as well as firefighters’ health and safety. Unpredictable and dangerous to fight, LIB fires release toxins contaminating firefighter protective gear. In response to this alarming fact, Emergency Technical Decon (ETD), a state-of-the-art cleaning solution provider, and Cool Clean Technologies, a solution provider of liquid CO2 technology innovations, partnered on a preliminary study investigating the removal of LIB fire contaminants from firefighter protective clothing. ETD and Cool Clean Technologies’ test results had an average lithium removal rate of over 80%; a promising start to completely decontaminating firefighter gear.     read more

Wildland Fire Mitigation & Management Commission Releases an Aerial Equipment Strategy Report

Author: Bob Roper, Senior Policy Advisor, Western Fire Chiefs Association
Published: 2/16/2023
This week, the Biden-Harris administration’s Wildland Fire Mitigation and Management Commission released a report outlining a strategy to meet aerial firefighting equipment needs through 2030. The report reexamines existing approaches to aviation fleet procurement, mobilization, composition and quantity in order to set aviation management on a new trajectory for the next decade and beyond. We encourage you to read the report and submit your thoughts and recommendations to the Commission or forward them to WFCA.     read more

WFCA, Plume Labs by AccuWeather Review 2022 Wildfire Season, Discuss 2023 Predictions in Webinar

Author: Western Fire Chiefs Association
Published: 1/23/2023
Experts from WFCA and Plume Labs by AccuWeather are coming together on Wednesday, Jan. 25, to discuss the continuing challenges that wildfires present to our communities and businesses. The teams will provide information on the forecast data solutions available to help mitigate the risk of wildfires to land, lives and property. And notably, they will present a collaborative proof of concept project: Wildfire and Smoke Evolution Mapping. Read on to learn more and register for this essential webinar.     read more

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