Creating a buffer-zone doesn't just have to stop around your home - a community-wide fuelbreak can be the difference between a destructive fire or not. Firefighters primarily from U.S. Army Pohakuloa Training Area were able to keep a 393-acre fire in the northern portion of Waikii on Hawaii Island from getting close to homes in the area in large part due to pre-fire fuels management.
"Firefighters managed to keep it away from the homes in large part because a crew at the Waikii Ranch keeps the buffer zone largely clear of material, said Captain Steve Colona of the Pohakuloa Training Area’s Fire and Emergency Services."
"Then things changed.
'Well, the wind didn’t cooperate,' said Hawaii Fire Department Battalion Chief Ty Medeiros.
It moved to the south and expanded the blaze, he said, which broke the fire’s containment although the area threatened has no structures in it.
The 20-mph winds not only directed the fire, they complicated the efforts of the two helicopters dropping water. One came from the county, and the other from the medevac unit stationed at the base."