SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif-You can't fight a fire with out a plan, and the plan for fighting the Calf Fire near Park Hill Road was on the books for years! The pre-attack map is 15 years old, and it shows the whole area where the Calf Fire happened. The SLO County Cal Fire Department was actually one of the first to create maps like this.
What you see on the maps is what you get in the field. "There is no recorded fire history, so we have been planning for a fire in that area, knowing that the fuels are well over 80-years-old and mostly dead and dying," says Cal Fire Battalion Chief Phill Veneris. The strategy for the park hill area is divided into four boxes, the salinas, behlmen, huer huero and las palitas plan.
Totaling nearly 50-thousand acres drawn out and ready for a fire. Even agencies out of the county knew the plan before arriving. "We held the fire along this line right here which is a proposed dozer line, when we knew we had to find that area we opened up and held along it, so it does have proposed tactics and strategies as well," says Battalion Chief Veneris.
Paper maps aren't the only tool, Cal Fire uses a web based map called NICS. It is in its first year of operation. It uses satellite and the internet for updates during a fire for crews to access on scene. Cal Fire updates there maps, and the Park Hill map in particular was already being updated but Cal Fire will now add any lessons learned.
In SLO County alone there are 9 fire maps and 3 evacuation maps.
Thursday, May 23 2013 1:29 AM EDT2013-05-23 05:29:02 GMT
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