Thursday, February 28, 2013

IAWF Meeting

I just returned from the International Association for Wildland Fire meeting in lovely Raleigh, North Carolina.  The meeting was a great opportunity to meet new collaborators and learn about the newest research in wildland fire safety, fire weather modeling, and fuels.

One organization that stood out among the crowd was the International Fire Relief Mission that provides equipment and training to fire departments and wildland firefighters overseas.  If you have a spare minute or are looking for a volunteer opportunity, go check them out!

The conference was live-tweeted by several people including @TTU_firelab, @SEFireScience, @FireScienceGOV, and @NCForestRanger.  Check out all the tweets at #FireFuels13.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Firefighter Training Field Day

On February 16th, the Texas Tech Student Association for Fire Ecology, Seth Pearson (formerly of The Nature Conservancy), and I held a field day as part of S-130/S-190 Type II firefighter training.  We had about 12 enthusiastic participants in the course.  Topics included use and care of hand tools, the IRPG, Fireline Handbook, basic hoses and pumps, driptorch care and use, and fire weather.  Here are some photos from the day.

Students size up a ribbon fire on the Texas Tech native rangeland.

SAFE Club President, Jeff Hill, learns to use a fire hose.

Seth Pearson explains drip torches and ignition techniques to students.

Students deploying practice fire shelters.

Neil Estes learns how to control hose pressure.
MS Student, Anna Meyer, assembles a drip torch.

Students dig a fire line at the native rangeland.

Students complete an arduous pack test at the Texas Tech Rec Center.

Science Fair

I was one of the many judges at the Southern Rolling Plains Science Fair last week.  Of course, my favorite project (though not one that I was involved in judging) was one by a junior girl who was working on the effects of fire on soils.  Below are a couple photos from the event.

5th grade students wait for judges to look at their projects

a junior girl's project on fire and soils

Monday, February 11, 2013

Wildlife Society Meeting

Dr. Verble attended the Joint Annual Meeting of the New Mexico and Arizona Wildlife Society last week.  There were lots of great talks on fire and its impacts on a variety of animals.  A major highlight of the conference was a session on the Las Conchas Wildfire (2011) at the Valles Caldera organized by Dr. Bob Parmenter.

Check out the live-tweets from the meeting at #JAM2013 and @newmexicotws or on Facebook at

And there was a huge dust storm on the drive back to Lubbock.  Wow.