Technical Report


Report of the forest fuels and hazard mitigation committee to the Oregon Department of Forestry and Oregon Fire Program Review Public Deposited

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  • Many Oregon communities face serious and growing risks from wildfires. These fires are increasingly large and severe after many decades of fire suppression and land use changes, flammable fuel buildups and interactions with climate. The wildland-urban interface (WUI) continues to expand as people relocate to rural areas where they often expect structural fire protection similar to what they experienced in cities. But conditions are different in rural communities located in fire-prone forests. The risk of severe wildfire is greater and limited resources are available to deal with severe fires when they break out. Fire prevention and suppression without vegetation management to reduce accumulated fuels has and will result in a continuation of uncharacteristically severe, stand-replacing wildfires, particularly in eastern and southwestern Oregon. These fires are difficult and expensive to control. They also place firefighters at high risk. Federal, state and rural fire protection agencies are struggling to cope as wildfire threats, costs, and the scope of protection responsibilities continue to increase. Federal agencies have initiated efforts to reduce hazardous fuels and increase community wildfire readiness as directed by the 2000 National Fire Plan (NFP) and 2003 Healthy Forests Restoration Act (HFRA). These mandates are now being implemented at multiple levels with every effort to coordinate for greater efficiency. As part of the 2004 Oregon Fire Program Review, the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) formed the Forest Fuels and Hazard Mitigation (FFHM) Committee to assess hazardous fuel loading issues, and recommend ways to reduce risk, and improve and strengthen the multiple hazard mitigation strategies in Oregon.
  • KEYWORDS: Bureau of Land Management, Prevention, Wildfire, Oregon Grange, Timber, Oregon, Environment and Conservation, Protection, Forestry, OFIC, Oregon State Legislature, State forester, Fire, Fire marshall, Land clearing, Farm bureau, Logging, Institute for Natural Resources, Oregon Department of Forestry
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