LETTER: Wildfire control policies troubling

Over the past number of years BC and other western provinces have experienced a number of serious wildfires.

Over the past number of years BC and other western provinces have experienced a number of serious wildfires which have caused considerable damage and losses to community infrastructure and forest resources. There appears to be a tendency to blame this situation on global warming, which is highly subjective, however one must reflect on deeper issues.

The recent disaster in Fort McMurray is a classic example and may well foretell future occurrences of a similar nature. To date and to my knowledge there has been no information released regarding initial action on this incident other than it was reported at 4 p.m. To this one should offer the following questions:

1. Knowing the starting point of the incident what control agency was responsible for initial attack?

2. What was the time interval between reporting and initial action on the incident by the responsible agency? This is critical.

3. Was the initial attack aerial or ground and if aerial how soon was ground action subsequently undertaken?

Efficient wildfire control is contingent on two criteria: early detection and fast initial attack. Undoubtedly there are conditions which occur when fires sustain a rapid development which will defy quick suppression. However, despite the massive resources and technology currently available it is apparent that we are encountering far too many large incidents in comparison to earlier years. This must logically lead to the conclusion that there are substantial, broad problems within the current wildfire control system.

This default is not apparent to the majority of the general public who are uninformed concerning effective wildfire control but is patently evident to knowledgeable forest industry personnel. An exacting review of current wildfire control policies and procedures by an independent, objective panel is critical, otherwise further negative impacts to communities and our valuable forest resource will continue.

G.L. Benwell, Revelstoke

The writer was a BC forest ranger from 1963-79

 

Just Posted

Castlegar council set to rule on three retail cannabis proposals

Residents have until Dec. 27 to comment on the business proposals

Nelson Boxing named province’s top club

The club won several awards while going 13-1 at provincials

Nelson council rejects review of mayor’s salary

Mayor Dooley proposed that $10,000 of his pay be put in trust and a review undertaken

Nelson-area man wants trapping laws changed after dog killed

Louis Seguin’s 10-month-old Australian shepherd died in a body-gripping trap last month

West Kootenay highways a mess as heavy snowfall continues

‘Roads are very icy, people have to be patient and have to slow down’

Man caught on camera allegedly trying to defraud ICBC

Auto-insurer warns B.C. drivers to record info after crashes

Warning issued as forecast calls for 20-foot waves in Tofino

Dangerous waves, strong currents and upper-shoreline flooding expected for Tofino-Ucluelet area

An 800-pound pig named Theodore needs a forever home, B.C. society says

‘Theodore is not destined to be somebody’s bacon’

2,000 Canadians died of an overdose in first 6 months of the year

New data from the Public Health Agency of Canada shows the crisis is not subsiding

Teenager Alphonso Davies wins Canadian Men’s Soccer Player for the Year Award

Derek Cornelius and Chilliwack native, Jordyn Huitema were named Canadian Youth International Players of the Year

B.C. teen MMA fighter shows heart

Young Unity MMA competitors bring home Ws

Another B.C. city votes to ban single-use plastic bags

First six months of proposed ban would focus on education, not enforcement

UK Prime Minister Theresa May wins party no-confidence vote, but troubles remain

May won the vote of 317 Conservative legislators with a 200-117 tally

B.C. trustee’s anti-LGBTQ comments got him barred from schools

Barry Neufeld calls vote to leave him off liaison list ‘workplace discrimination’

Most Read