Planning makes the difference to get ready for the next large fire. Managers offered a pack test and safety refresher course this weekend for 71 firefighters and support workers who missed recertifying earlier in the season, including Tribal employees who operate heavy equipment.
“While we have time, we are preparing more local firefighters,” said Fire Management Officer Bryce Rogers. The veterans toiled in 95 degree sun Saturday to pass their work capacity test -- a 3 mile walk in 45 minutes with a 45 pound pack. They studied an 8-hour safety refresher.
Residents can also prepare, by the “Ready – Set – Go” process for dealing ahead of time with a sudden fire. Get ready: remove fuels around the yard, pack important papers and medicines in one spot, let family know who to call and where to go, and have transportation planned.
If a fire may be near, get set: gather family and pets. Have a vehicle packed, pointed out the driveway. Before leaving home for a fire, shut windows; turn off propane tanks, pilot lights, and air conditioner; and leave doors unlocked.
Then if a fire erupts, you can GO. Fire prevention staff will be visiting some rural neighborhoods to talk with local district people about how they can prepare for fire.
Smokey the Bear joined the parade in Lodge Grass Saturday, then was honored to dance at the powwow. For his giveaway, kids at the arbor received bags stuffed with fire prevention items.
Activity - The Bad Horse fire north of Reno Creek should be completely contained Sunday evening. A short crew of 13 persons and three engines are continuing to mop hot spots within the Plum Creek fire near Pryor. Managers thank the engines that have come to assist with those fires.
Crow’s helicopter returned at noon from South Dakota, and our engines arrived Saturday night from New Mexico. All line crews are home and available locally. Drifting smoke in the region Saturday and Sunday came from large fires south of Ashland.
Weather - High temperatures peak above 95 degrees in Crow every day next week, with slight chances of thunderstorms. A day of winds in a dry cold front may be developing to reach us Tuesday. Fire danger is very high across the Reservation.
Restrictions - A Tribal Executive Order has closed the Reservation’s Bighorn and Pryor Mountains, prohibited all fireworks use, and restricted outdoor smoking to areas with no burnable material. “Stage I” fire restrictions prohibit campfires and most open flame outdoors. Plan on cold camping.