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Thursday, July 28, 2016

S-495 Nomination deadline is October 7!


S-495 Geospatial Fire Analysis, Interpretation, and Application: Nomination deadline is October 7!


If you are interested in becoming a Long Term Analyst (LTAN), don't miss the 2016-17 offering of S-495, taught once every 2 years. S-495 covers the fundamentals of fire behavior modeling systems, including limitations, assumptions; running the modeling systems; and interpreting outputs for decision-makers. Nominations (via Google Form) are due OCTOBER 7, 2016--EARLIER than many other courses since the online class begins in November 2016. The final unit is taught at NAFRI in April 2017. For details, please go to:
http://www.nationalfiretraining.net/schedule/detail/na_S495_04-03-2017_5526
If you have questions, contact the Course Coordinator, Gary Luce at: galuce at fs.fed.us

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Collaborative Efforts to Advance Wildfire Risk Assessment Applications - FSim Workshop


On January 20th, a small group of risk assessment modelers from the RMRS, PNW, Enterprise Teams, Fire Modeling Institute, Pyrologix, and the Wildland Fire Management RDA met at the Forestry Sciences Laboratory in Missoula, MT to discuss calibrating FSim, the Large Fire Spread Simulator. The objective was to share methods of wildfire risk assessments spanning landscape to national levels. Outcomes of the workshop included best practices and workflows to better define FSim’s capacity, strengths and weaknesses in assisting with wildfire risk assessments. The model developer, Mark Finney, was present to provide a background of the initial FSim application and early development. The workshop was attended in person and virtually by 20 people and facilitated by Karin Riley of the Human Dimensions Group and Erin Noonan-Wright of the WFMRDA.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Agency Administrator WFDSS Refreshers

Agency Administrator Refreshers Scheduled
For The
Wildland Fire Decision Support System
**********************************
Utilize the links below to register for one of two WFDSS webinars being offered for Agency Administrators.  The short webinars will each have a different emphasis.
March 24th – General Agency Administrator WFDSS Refresher
·         Overview of what Agency Administrators should know about WFDSS.
·         Discuss 2015 Incident Objectives and Incident Requirements review findings.
·         Review and highlight recent WFDSS changes important to Agency Administrators.
·         Discuss decision support tools and their use in decision making.
·         Discuss WFDSS spatial fire planning.
April 20th – Decision Making in WFDSS for Agency Administrators
·         Define the Agency Administrator role in decision making and documentation.
·         Identify areas an Agency Administrator should focus on in WFDSS.
·         Discuss the Risk and Complexity Analysis in WFDSS and what it tells you.
·         Review decision tools and how they can inform decisions.
These refreshers will be beneficial to Agency Administrators or acting Agency Administrators. Participation is encouraged for both sessions.  The webinars will be recorded and hosted on the Line Officer Resources site http://www.wfmrda.nwcg.gov/line_officer_resources.php.
Please forward this announcement to anyone you feel would benefit from these presentations.  If you have questions contact Lisa Elenz at 208-387-5658.
Thanks –
Wildland Fire Management Research, Development, & Application program

General Agency Administrator WFDSS Refresher
Decision Making in WFDSS for the Agency Administrator

Mobile Tech. Group Seeks Feedback

We want to hear your thoughts and needs for mobile technologies in fire and aviation management. Your insights improve our situational awareness and allow us to determine requirements we can evaluate for the benefit of the entire fire and aviation management community. http://goo.gl/forms/Viwm98rpN1

Thursday, February 18, 2016

WFDSS Deep Dive Webinars


Join Us for one of our 
WFDSS Data Management Webinars!
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
February 25th at 13:00 Mountain Time
OR
March 3rd at 10:00 Mountain Time

Register for one of the two webinars at the following location:



* You will have to choose the time slot that works best for you from the dropdown at the top of the registration screen.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Southern Fire Exchange - Free Smoke Webinar




Establishing a National Methodology for Operational Mixing Height Determination
A free webinar from the Southern Fire Exchange 
Thursday, December 3, 2015. 1:00-2:30 PM ET



Presentations led by:

Matthew Fearon, Desert Research Institute

Robyn Heffernan, National Weather Service
Mixing Height is important for assessing smoke dispersion for prescribed fires and wildfires. This webinar will review and explain the strengths and weaknesses of several tested methods for determining mixing heights. The webinar will include discussion of the innovative Turbulent Kinetic Energy (TKE) method that may provide critical atmospheric information for predicting Dispersion. TKE represents the most robust method for determining Mixing Height while the Stull Method represents an alternative approach that may be more operationally feasible. The webinar will discuss both approaches for determining Mixing Height. In addition, National Weather Service programs for determining Mixing Height will also be described.

Questions? contactus@southernfireexchange.org
Registration required! 
Or scan the QR Code: 

Monday, November 2, 2015

IFTDSS Workshops at AFE Conference


WFM RD&A Staff will be holding 2 IFTDSS Workshops at the Association of Fire Ecology's 6th International Fire Ecology and Management Congress in San Antonio Texas on November 16, 2015. See the description of the workshop below and use the AFE Website to register to attend one of these workshops.

IFTDSS – Interagency Fuels Treatment Decision Support System—1/2 day

This workshop entails basic training, demonstration and discussion regarding IFTDSS – The Interagency Fuels Treatment Decision Support System. IFTDSS is a web-based software and data integration framework that organizes previously existing fire and fuels software applications to make fuels treatment planning and analysis more efficient and effective. IFTDSS provides a way for users to learn one interface, access a variety of data and models all in one place, and pass data (inputs and outputs) easily between models. The session will include hands on utilization of existing workflows in the application including burn plan preparation (using the 2014 Interagency Burn Plan Template), Hazard Analysis, and Risk Analysis. IFTDSS utilizes several well-known existing tools to calculate fire behavior, fire containment, fire effects, probability of ignition, fuel consumption, and fuel characterization. This workshop is appropriate for fire practitioners and managers that participate in burn plan preparation, fire hazard analysis, and risk assessments.
To get more information and register for one of these workshops visit - http://afefirecongress.org/workshops-2/

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Fire Behavior Webinar/Workshop coming soon

Please register for Sharing Fire Behavior Practices & Lessons Learned Webinar on Nov 16, 2015 2:00 PM EST1:00 PM CST12:00 PM MST11:00 AM PST10:00 AM AKST at:

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8009583037952390913

Target Audience: Fire Behavior Specialists including Fire Behavior Analysts, Long-term Analysts, Geo-spatial Analysts and fire behavior Technical Specialists

Summary:
As the fire behavior community aspires to promote best practices among a range of fire behavior experience, this webinar strives to share and record dialogue regarding lessons learned from fire behavior prediction on 2015 wildfire incidents. Every fire season there are parts of the country that receive a lot of fire activity. Fire-fighting resources are assigned and consequently numerous fire behavior specialists begin focusing on these areas to ensure fire-fighter safety and to develop short-, mid-, and long- term fire behavior simulations to support these efforts and management decisions. An incredible amount of knowledge is gained and shared during these short periods of intense focus; yet often these fire behavior practices and lessons learned are recorded, stored, and not shared beyond the incident.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Those of you attending the AFE conference in San Antonio TX, room location will be forthcoming.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

WFM RD&A Work Highlighted in The Green Line

The Washington Office of Forest Service Fire and Aviation Management recently published a Special Edition of their Green Line newsletter and it highlighted some of the work we are doing here in the WFM RD&A. We would like to share these stories with you along with a copy of the Newsletter itself. Hats off to Tim, Andrew, and Ben for the great work on these projects!

You can view a copy of the full newsletter here

TwitterFire
For the past two fire seasons Wildland Fire Management RD&A (WFM RD&A) staff have been mining tweets about wildfires from Twitter's enormous pool of data with the goal of developing an early warning system for new and emerging wildfires. Utilizing the existing structure and concept of the Threat News Explorer, Ben Butler has been working with Kingbird Software to build a web app called TwitterFire to support this concept. Every 15 minutes TwitterFire relies on a custom built search algorithm to examine an average of 5,250,00 tweets and narrow the data set down to only those likely to be talking about a wildfire in the United States. The tweets are then mapped using Yahoo's Placemaker API and used to drive a notification system which sends emails and/or text messages to registered users when a threshold is met for a specific geographic location. The concept relies on the millions of Twitter users to spot wildfires and tweet about them- and so far it is working. The science of Social Media Data Mining is growing rapidly, and our ability to extract meaningful value from Social Media posts has improved greatly over the course of this project. The TwitterFire Web App from within the Threat News Explorer at - http://wwetac.us/tne/tne.html .

Structure Protection Assessment

WFM RD&A staff members Andrew Bailey, Ben Butler and Tim Sexton are utilizing data from R6 to assess effectiveness of fire suppression in preventing structure loss. Post-fire reviews were conducted by using Cadastral and Structure Address data entered in to the WFDSS values- at-risk component to compare number of structures threatened to known losses. Inter-governmental partnerships are yielding improvements jn data quality, which may assist managers in the future for ICS209 reporting, developing success stories for incidents, and evaluating decisions.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Distributing Information


Talk is cheap - or so they say!

Often we are overwhelmed with information and unsure about what to do. Other times we wish we had more information and then when we dive in and try to find it we struggle with it's accuracy and authority. Here at the WFM RD&A we spend a large amount of time trying to determine the best way to get timely, accurate, and helpful information our to our users and constituent groups. When we first started this blog the idea was that we would use it [heavily] to dynamically update our website with stories, project highlights, training notices and other helpful things. After taking a close look at our analytics (more on that in a future post and in our annual report) we realized that perhaps not as many people as we'd hoped were following our blog. Due to this fact we moved away from posting to the blog and tried other methods to reach out. 

What I would like to do with this post is try to determine a.) our current blog audience and b.) figure out if there are better ways we can get information out.

The Wildland Fire Management RD&A actually has a number of information outlets and I'd like to spend a few minutes outlining some of those before asking a favor of you...

WFM RD&A Websitewww.wfmrda.nwcg.gov
Most of you are likely familiar with our website. In fact you may have jumped into this blog from our website. This is currently our primary information outlet.

Application Websites
http://wfdss.usgs.gov and http://iftdss.sonomatech.com/
These websites are very specific and generally only contain information related to the applications they represent. You will likely notice that we sometimes host information on our wfmrda.nwcg.gov website about these applications. We tend to post more philosophical content about these specific applications on the WFM RD&A website.

Social Media
You may not realize it but the WFM RD&A Program has several social media accounts. If you haven't seen them you might want to check out:
YouTube Channels
WFDSS Support Videos (YouTube Channel)
IFTDSS Support Videos (YouTube Channel)
WFM RD&A YouTube Channel


Twitter
- WFDSS Twitter Account


As you can see we put a fairly large amount of content out there. Especially when you consider the depth of some of these resources. Some are just getting started while others are very mature and include a number of links to additional resources and tools.


Is it enough?
Think Bigger


What I am ultimately interested in knowing is how we can best get information out to you, our customers.

Please take a few minutes to jot down an idea (or two) using the comments feature below. Anything goes! If you'd like to see a newsletter; read more regular posts on this blog; perhaps you'd like to see us on Facebook or to use Twitter to it's full potential; maybe you prefer to get information via email and a Listserv would be best, whatever you have we're interested.