wildfire

The Washington Post

Wildfire season may be over in the Sierra Nevada, but there's one issue that is still burning white hot among those fight forest fires for the federal government. A recent article in the Washington Post documents a number of high profile claims of gender discrimination and sexual harassment among female firefighters with the U.S. Forest Service. We spoke with reporter Daryl Fears about what he learned and what the government says it is doing to address the issue.

Inciweb / US Forest Service

In late June the Erskine Fire devastated communities around Lake Isabella in Kern County. Nearly 300 homes were destroyed in the fast moving blaze in communities like South Lake. Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom reached out to the Federal Emergency Management Agency for help. In late July, FEMA rejected the state's request for a major disaster declaration, and the federal help that accompanies it. That left many locals shocked and dismayed. Lois Henry of the Bakersfield Californian joined us...

Kerry Klein/KVPR

In the Sierra Nevada, it’s estimated that tens of millions of trees have died as a result of drought, many of which succumbed to infestations from bark beetles. As a result, we’ve been told our risk of wildfire is far higher than normal, but FM89’s Kerry Klein says the science doesn’t necessarily agree. Gaze across a hillside at 5,000 feet in the Sierra Nevada, and that landscape, usually a wash of green pines, firs and cedars, is probably smudged with reds and browns. “You're looking at,...

Kern County Fire Department

(Editorial Note: This is an evolving story likely to have updates.) (update 6/27 5:38 p.m.) Fire crews are making progress today on what is being called the most destructive wildfire in Kern County history, and some residents are beginning to return home. The Erskine Fire has burned more than 45,000 acres and has destroyed 200 homes near Lake Isabella. It also killed two people. Evacuation orders are still in place for residents in Squirrel Valley and South Lake, but some residents...

US Forest Service Prevents Its Own Scientists From Talking About Study

Sep 17, 2015
Courtesy of US Forest Service / InciWeb

The US Forest Service Pacific Southwest Research Station is preventing one of its scientists from talking about a study he authored in the journal “Science.” As Amy Quinton reports from Sacramento, the agency even unsuccessfully requested that Science editors hold the article or remove his name from the study. US Forest Service scientist Malcolm North authored the peer-reviewed article “Reform Forest Fire Management.” It says suppressing every fire in overgrown forests is not only expensive...

Megafires Don't Melt Opposition To California Fire Fee

Sep 17, 2015
Mike McMillan / US Forest Service

Rural Californians are reeling from yet another destructive fire season. But that doesn’t mean they now support a controversial fire fee imposed several years ago by legislative Democrats and Governor Jerry Brown. Chris Nichols reports from Sacramento. Bags stuffed with Betsy Miller’s family photos and quilting fabric sit ready to go in her Sierra foothills home. Miller and her husband, Les, are retirees who live in Amador County. The Butte Fire forced them to evacuate last week. Now, they’re...

USFS

Light rain, cooler temperatures and higher humidity in the last 24 hours have helped firefighters in their effort to contain the Rough Fire. The blaze has now consumed 139,000 acres and is 40 percent contained, though officials expect the containment number to rise later today. While the rain has helped the fight, it wasn't been enough to extinguish the fire. It also has forced firefighters to change their tactics, by making it more difficult to intentionally set brush on fire in efforts to...

Courtesy of US Forest Service / InciWeb

Update: Thursday September 10th 4:00 PM
The Rough Fire continues to grow today as new mandatory evacuation orders are in place for Grant Grove and the community of Wilsonia in Kings Canyon National Park. The fire has now consumed over 110,000 acres and is just 29 percent contained. The Red Cross has opened an evacuation shelter in Sanger for residents displaced by the blaze. Original post: Wednesday September 9th Grant Grove in Kings Canyon National Park and several communities near...

US Forest Service Facebook

The community of Hume Lake is under a mandatory evacuation order today after the southern flank of the Rough Fire crossed the Kings River. So far, the lightning sparked blaze has consumed over 23,600 acres. Tony Botti with the Fresno County Sheriff's Department says the biggest concern is the safety of area residents. His department ordered the evacuation late Tuesday afternoon. Botti: "We had a bit of a game changing event today in that the Rough Fire hopped across Highway 180 and...

US Forest Service

In the last 24 hours the Willow Fire has grown by around 1,000 acres, fueled by dense brush, hot conditions and wind. As of Friday morning the fire has consumed around 4,300 acres and is 30 percent contained. The blaze began Saturday near Bass Lake and is now 30 percent contained. Officials say the southern flank of the fire is now burning in the footprint of the 2001 North Fork fire, an area filled with dense brush, tree snags and dead woody material. On the north crews are making progress...

Pages