Recognizing that the beginning of May signals the general start of wildland fire season in the northern hemisphere, the International Association of Wildland Fire (IAWF) launches Global Wildfire Awareness Week May 1-7.
“Sharing Our Tools” is the 2012 theme highlighting on-going work by the IAWF to link firefighters, researchers, government officials and those residents, business owners and recreationists facing possible wildland fire impacts for improved communications and sharing of research and techniques. “I encourage people to use our www.wildfireworld.org website to see what’s happening in wildland fire around the world and to add your voice to the discussion,” said IAWF Executive Director Mikel Robinson. “We encourage people to share successes, community descriptions as well as links on the site to better tell the growing story of wildfire around the world,” added Robinson. The site is an expanding resource for conveying wildland fire information showcasing tools that make a difference.
In April the IAWF hosted the Human Dimensions of Wildland Fire conference in Seattle, WA, with presentations and discussions focused on lessons learned from recent fires in Canada, Australia, Spain, Ecuador, Mexico and the United States; all countries facing remarkably similar wildfire challenges. Presenters explored effective ways for communities to improve conditions, ways for firefighters to communicate and operate more safely and ways agencies can positively engage with those impacted by wildland fires. This month, those presentations will be available for learning and sharing. In October, IAWF will present the International Wildland Fire Safety Summit in Sydney, Australia, and 2013 plans include the 4th Fire Behavior and Fuels Conference in North Carolina and St. Petersburg, Russia.