Western Pacific fires

Indonesia Uses Trained Elephants to Control Forest Fires

"In this Sunday, Nov. 10, 2015 photo, forestry officials ride on the back of an elephant as they patrol an area affected by forest fire in Siak, Riau province, Indonesia." (AP Photo/Rony Muharrman)

The elephant plays an important role in the lifestyles of many people in Southeast Asia - and in ways you might have never imagined. Elephants as part of a fire crew? Check.

From the Source:

"Officials in Indonesia are using trained elephants outfitted with water pumps and hoses to help control fires that have claimed vast amounts of forest while sending thick haze into neighboring countries.

For nearly three months, Riau province in East Sumatra has been blanketed by smoke from forest fires and land clearing, especially in peat-rich areas where flames are difficult to contain.

At the elephant conservation center in Siak district, 23 trained elephants are being used as 'forest watchdogs.'"

VIDEO: Navy and Guam Fire Department Partner to Extinguish Weekend Grass Fire

Wildfires continue to ravage Guam, further exposing the need to ramp up prevention and mitigation efforts there.  

From the Source: 

"Navy Sailors and civilian firefighters partnered with the Guam Fire Department to extinguish a grassfire that affected approximately 20 acres of land on Nimitz Hill April 5-6. 

Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 25 deployed a MH-60S Knighthawk helicopter that conducted five daytime and five nighttime water drops while three U.S. Naval Base Guam (NBG) Fire and Emergency Services (FES) crews fought the fire on the ground alongside Guam Fire Department counterparts.

'The dedication and professionalism of the pilots and crew of HSC-25 attest to the Navy’s commitment to preserve life and property,' said Joint Region Marianas Chief of Staff Capt. Mark Scovill. 'The day and night trainings they consistently conduct around the island prepare the crew to respond to emergencies such as the recent grassfires.'

Continuous training proved beneficial to the community as the blaze was extinguished preventing evacuation of nearby residents and damage to structures."

Uploaded by pncnews on 2014-04-07.

Hunters Suspected in Talofofo Fire: Smoke from Inarajan Blaze Shuts School

Brush and grass fires are becoming more and more frequent not just in Hawaii but also throughout the Pacific. Case and point, firefighters in Guam have responded to 70 grass fires in March alone! We are excited to be a part of Pacific Fire Exchangeʻs upcoming projects in Guam (and Palau and Yap) to address their wildfire issues and what can be done to mitigate them. 

From the Source: 

"Officials with the Guam Fire Department believe a fire that burned private land near Talofofo Falls Resort Park may have been started intentionally.

Firefighters battled that blaze and a separate fire in Inarajan yesterday afternoon.

The Inarajan fire burned a small area of land down the hill from Inarajan Middle School, prompting an evacuation of the campus…

Local and federal fire officials have called on residents for help in minimizing grass fires.

Artero has said residents shouldn't burn trash at their homes.

Guam's fire hazard rating currently is in critical and is expected to remain at that level for at least a few more months.

In March, firefighters responded to more than 70 grass fires.

Fire officials noted their belief that at least a few of those fires also were started by people."

Above: "Firefighter Roland Alcantra prevents a fire in Talofofo from spreading by snuffing out the flames. Yesterday, firefighters dealt with several small grass fires in Talofofo and Inarajan. Smoke from an Inarajan fire filled Inarajan Middle School, leading Department of Education officials to close the school early. Sean-Michael Davis/For Pacific Daily News"

Above: "Firefighter Roland Alcantra prevents a fire in Talofofo from spreading by snuffing out the flames. Yesterday, firefighters dealt with several small grass fires in Talofofo and Inarajan. Smoke from an Inarajan fire filled Inarajan Middle School, leading Department of Education officials to close the school early. Sean-Michael Davis/For Pacific Daily News"