In early November, Lincoln County Fire Chief Rick Stever attended a Wildfire Risk Assessment Program Fire Safe Council meeting in Reno sponsored by the University of Nevada Reno.
He said this ongoing program that Nevada uses is catching the attention of other states who are inquiring about it.
Stever added that “due to the nature of our ecosystem and environment there is a big concern about educating the public about wildfire protection in some areas more than others and in getting information out to the public. There is a lot of information available on learning about how to be protected from wildfires and getting involved in things.”
At the meeting, Stever said a woman from the Chelan, Washington area spoke about the devastating fires that occurred there this summer.
A report from an Oregon television station said the Northwest wildfires in Oregon and Washington, “took the lives of three firefighters, destroyed many homes and forced hundreds of residents to evacuate, sometimes for weeks on end. They also left ranchers struggling over the loss of cattle And prime grazing land.”
Stever did not identify the woman, but she said, “The the impact, emotionally and economically, is tremendous. “You don’t really realize how it can affect people until everything they’ve got is burned out. In the economy, once people lose their homes, some do not return, but move away, others do stay and rebuild, but always, businesses are impacted heavily.”
Stever said he later attended a meeting of the same group at Mt. Charleston sponsored by the U.S. Division of Forestry, and a summary and recap of the Carpenter 1 Fire in July and August, 2013 about 25 miles northwest of Las Vegas, and what has happened and how the businesses have been affected since.
The fire began on July 1, 2013 near Pahrump, before spreading eastward. Carpenter 1 was seen for miles across the Las Vegas metropolitan area,and was the largest fire to occur on Mount Charleston in decades.
After eight weeks of battling the fire, Carpenter 1 was fully contained on August 18, 2013. It consumed nearly 28,000 acres, causing parts of State Routes 156 and 157 to be closed, resulting in the evacuation of residents and closure of businesses and portions of the Spring Mountains National Recreation Area. The fire, stretching between 5,000-11,000 feet elevations, was fought by hundreds of firefighters and eight Hotshot crews. Helicopters, fire engines, water tenders and a DC-10 tanker plane were all used.