FireWatch

FireWatch is a service that provides links to news stories from the fire community that have attracted our attention.

The lonely lives of the last remaining forest fire lookouts

The lonely lives of the last remaining forest fire lookouts

They call them "Freaks on the Peaks". A few years ago thousands of people spent their summers on mountaintops, living in remote lookout towers and scanning the surrounding wilderness for signs of smoke. Now only a few hundred remain. Click here to read more.

New form of fire, inspired by bourbon, might help with oil spills

New form of fire, inspired by bourbon, might help with oil spills

Fire whirls, commonly known as firenadoes, look like tornadoes and burn hotter than many other fires. Scientists from the University of Maryland conducted experiments on fire whirls because they thought there was a possibility that their power could be harnessed for...

Why no standards for rescue training?

Why no standards for rescue training?

The deaths of a firefighting student and a volunteer in separate training accidents in Ontario underscore the astonishing lack of regulation that exists across the dangerous profession. Both men died after being pulled under river ice during cold-water rescue...

June in fire history – The Ufa train disaster

June in fire history – The Ufa train disaster

A powerful gas pipeline explosion demolished part of the trans-Siberian railway on June 4, 1989, engulfing two passenger trains in flames and leaving hundreds dead. Many of the victims were children bound for holiday camps by the Black Sea. Click here to read more.

Incremental alarms better for firefighter heart health

Incremental alarms better for firefighter heart health

According to a recent study, incremental alarms help prevent firefighter heart rates from reaching extreme highs. And that could help curb a leading cause of firefighter deaths. Click here to read more.

Fire safety training comes to Ahousaht schools

Fire safety training comes to Ahousaht schools

Fire Safety experts arrived in Ahousaht to spend two days working with senior Maaqtusiis Secondary students and interested community members on home fire safety and firefighting training. Click here to read more.

Too little being done to protect communities from wildfires

Yet another destructive wildfire raises questions about our failure to learn from Kelowna and Slave Lake - to take steps to guard against their fury. "This happened in Kelowna in 2003, why didn't we all learn from that?" Click here to read more.

Ten Ft. McMurray firefighters and what the fire took from them

Ten Ft. McMurray firefighters and what the fire took from them

At least 20 Fort McMurray firefighters - even as they helped save the homes of countless others from a wildfire that raged through their northern Alberta city - had their own hearts broken as their homes burned to the ground. The Toronto Star talked to ten of them....

Time to implement long-dormant plan for managing wildfires

Time to implement long-dormant plan for managing wildfires

In 2004, in Haines Junction, Yukon, the Canadian Council of Forest Ministers (CCFM) identified the need for a new, strategic approach to wildland fire management, based on a risk-management framework. In 2005, at the CCFM meeting in Saskatoon, the ministers signed the...

Visor lets firefighters see through the smoke

Visor lets firefighters see through the smoke

When you're fighting fires, you want as many weapons as possible at your disposal. Now, augmented reality glasses are helping firefighters navigate extreme working conditions. Click here to read more.

Homeowner watches Ft. McMurray home burn on security cam

Homeowner watches Ft. McMurray home burn on security cam

When thousands fled the flames in Fort McMurray and were wondering if they would ever see their homes again, James O'Reilly wasn't one of them. He knew for sure he had lost his home of almost 20 years after watching it burn to the ground on his iPhone. The original...

May in fire history – Hindenburg zeppelin fire

May in fire history – Hindenburg zeppelin fire

It was the largest airship ever built; over eight hundred feet long from its nose to its massive tail fins. It was the height of luxury travel. It was called the Hindenburg and in the space of 37 seconds it was destroyed in a fire that killed a third of its crew and...

Coroner issues 33 recommendations after inquest

Coroner issues 33 recommendations after inquest

Ontario's coroner called for stricter fire inspection rules and a system that would "red flag" any property that has a history of violating fire codes following the inquest into two deadly house fires. Click here to read more.

Pine beetle infestations reduce wildfire severity, study suggests

Pine beetle infestations reduce wildfire severity, study suggests

A study that examined more than 80 fires over the last 25 years in the Pacific Northwest region of the U.S. concluded that pine beetle and western spruce budworm infestations did not increase the severity of wildfires, but actually decreased the intensity. Click here...

Birdhouse alarm created to prevent wildfires

Birdhouse alarm created to prevent wildfires

While there are many ways to prevent forest fires, creators in Spain have a new tool - the Birdhouse alarm. The alarm uses a smoke detector, capable of identifying smoke within 20 metres. A geo-located message is then sent through a 3G connection to the local fire...

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