trainings

Registration Open for Hawaii Wildfire Summit

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Mahalo to Big Island Now and West Hawaii Today for publishing information on our upcoming Hawaii Wildfire Summit.

From the Source:

Since wildfires are such a wide-spanning issue that affect communities, lands, and waters, the solutions require everyone playing a proactive role. The Hawai‘i Wildfire Summit is a unique opportunity to learn, share, and collaborate with others who deal with wildfire in their work and communities across Hawai‘i and the Pacific.

This year’s theme is “Collaborating Across Hawaii and the Pacific for Summit to Sea Wildfire Protection.”

Presentations and workshops that one would otherwise have to attend on the mainland U.S. will also be a highlight of the event, offering a local option to connect to national-level programs, research and trainings.

Kauai Firefighters Put in Over 400 Hours of Training a Year

Credit: Dennis Fujimoto/The Garden Island

Credit: Dennis Fujimoto/The Garden Island

Everyday, we must count our blessings for having not only brave, but very skilled firefighters on our islands. Kauai Fire Department firefighters alone log over 400 hours of training each year, training that spans everything from "first responder training and fire operations to extraction, rope rescue, swift water rescue and hazmat."

From the Source:

“The skill set is great, and we don’t always use them,” he said. “We say the skills are perishable — if you don’t use it, they tend to fade on you. But again, it’s muscle memory and practice. Not just the formal practicing of coming to a workshop, but practicing in the field.”

"A lot of the scenarios firefighters train for are low frequency, high risk — meaning they don’t happen a lot, but when they do, it can have a dramatic effect on those involved, Vaughan said."

Completing the (Fire) Cycle of Information Sharing

HWMO is working with its Pacific partners to bring national wildfire preparedness programs to the local level. Photo Credit: HWMO

Check out Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network's feature on HWMO released today, written by Community Outreach Coordinator, Pablo Beimler.

Excited to see the hard work of HWMO and its Pacific partners showcased on the national stage!

Mahalo Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network for the opportunity to share our lessons learned.

From the Source:

"Living in the most remote island chain in the world with over 2,500 miles of Pacific Ocean separating us from the continental U.S. (a.k.a. “the mainland”), it is only fitting that Hawai‘i has a unique set of traits and challenges that can sometimes make one feel isolated from the rest of the world. However, the era of modern networking capabilities is helping shed light on the commonalities we share, while still honoring the differences that make us unique."

"Starting in 2013, HWMO collaborated with the IAFC Ready, Set, Go! program to produce a Hawaii-version of the Wildland Fire Action Guide. IAFC graciously printed 10,000 copies for HWMO and county fire departments to distribute. Replacing photos and references to conifer forests, shake roof homes, and other mainland- WUI features, HWMO integrated Hawai’i-specific photos and information and added an introductory section about wildfire in Hawai’i’. Since incorporating the new guide into our fire preparedness workshops and outreach booths, we’ve noticed a spike in interest from residents and even visitors about the Ready, Set, Go! program. Whether learning how to prevent embers from collecting under the lanai (patio) or browsing the visual list of recommended Firewise native plants, residents have taken the RSG! guides into their own hands. Launiupoko Firewise Committee in West Mauʻi plans to send more than 350 guides to residents as their first ever Firewise event."

HWMO Awarded the 2016 Ready Set Go! Leadership Award for Career Department

Students from Malama Kai Foundation's Ocean Warriors program read through Ready, Set, Go! Action Guides - part of an integrated approach to empower keiki to share what they've learned with their family and general public.

We are honored to be this year's 2016 Ready Set Go! Leadership Award for Career Department recipient! The Ready, Set, Go! program has been an incredible partner and a crucial resource for wildfire preparation information over the past few years. Big mahalo for all of their kokua over the years!

We look forward to formally accepting the award at this year's Wildland-Urban Interface Conference in Reno on March 9th!

From the Source:

  • The RSG Award for Excellence
    • Flower Mound (Texas) Fire Department
  • The RSG Innovation Award
    • Austin (Texas) Fire Department Wildfire Division
  • The RSG Leadership Award
    • Career Department: Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization
    • Volunteer/Combination Department: Aubrey (Texas) Fire Department

"The winners have incorporated the RSG! Program into their prefire mitigation or preparedness outreach. They’ve also demonstrated innovation in expanding the program to neighboring emergency service groups to enhance wildfire readiness throughout their communities. These RSG champions have helped their communities become actively engaged in the wildland-fire solution."

"Recently, HWMO created and printed a state Action Guide, taking steps to make it as detailed and specific to their region as possible. HWMO used RSG education as a first step toward community engagement in order to ensure RSG principles are not only shared but also put into action. They worked with partners and their community to develop a strategic and innovative process that started with an initial CWPP meeting to identify community-based priorities and wildfire concerns. Their innovative and engaging ideas in promoting RSG and fire wise landscaping make them this year’s winner of the RSG Leadership Award for Career Departments."

Fire Engine Donated to Hawaii CC Fire Science Students

"Hawai’i Community College Fire Science students and instructors from the Fire Science and Diesel Mechanics programs stand with the fire engine, donated recently by the Honolulu Fire Department. Back row: Matthew Winters, left, and Jacob Smith. Front row, left to right: Fire Science Instructor Jack Minassian, Kawai Ronia, Jayce Ah Heong, Michael Rangasan, and Diesel Mechanics Instructor Mitchell Soares. Hawai’i CC courtesy photo." (Credit: Big Island Now)

Congratulations to Jack Minassian, a long-time partner of HWMO, and all involved with the Fire Science program at Hawaii Community College. Thanks to Honolulu Fire Department donations, the Fire Science program will be able to provide hands-on learning experience for its students "as they prepare to enter the workforce." It's great to watch this program really grow every year!

From the Source:

“'This fire engine will be a great teaching tool,' said Hawai’i CC Fire Science Instructor ­Jack Minassian. 'For example, students in the fire hydraulics class will be able to practice providing proper water pressure and proper gallons per minute on a fire while using real equipment.'

Graduates of Hawai’i CC’s Fire Science program have been employed within federal, state, and local fire service agencies, according to Minassian."

Fending Off a Fire: Workshop Offers Hands-On Fire Extinguisher Training

"Fire Battalion Chief Joseph Farias left indicates where to aim the spray to Mary and Dale Watson at a fire extinguisher workshop Saturday at the Waikoloa Stables. Laura Shimabuku/West Hawaii Today"

Mahalo West Hawaii Today for including the recent training we helped put together with Waikoloa CERT with additional help from Hawaii Fire Department!

From the Source:

"October is Fire Prevention Month which has been recognized since 1871, the year of the Great Chicago Fire that claimed the lives of more than 250 people, leaving 100,000 homeless and destroying over 17,400 structures. Part of the month-long commemoration, The Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization and Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) sponsored a fire extinguisher workshop Saturday at the Waikoloa Stables.

The free workshop not only explained the components of this commonplace item, it also allowed students to have hands-on training in its correct use. Under the supervision of Hawaii County Fire Department personnel, each attendee was given the opportunity to PASS - pull the pin, aim, squeeze and sweep. Classifications of various extinguishers was also explained and which ones are best for home use in different scenarios."

Honolulu Firefighters Kick Off Prevention Week with Family Fun Event

Credit: KHON2

Great job by Honolulu FIre Department and Federal Fire Department of getting this year's Fire Prevention Week message out to the public.

From the Source:

"HFD hosted a full day of fire safety activities and games, as well as prizes and interactive displays.

Smokey Bear and Sparky the Fire Dog also made appearance.

'Our biggest thing is to test your smoke detectors once a month and also to create a family fire evacuation plan, so that’s what we’re stressing today,' said Federal Fire inspector Angela Sanders."

Hawaii Firefighter Recruits Complete Training

Congratulations to the new class of Hawaii County Fire Department firefighters. Here's to a full year of rigorous training that included wildland fire training (and an Ready, Set, Go! Workshop by HWMO) and to the safety and wellbeing of our new service men/women.

Credit - Hawaii Tribune-Herald

Credit - Hawaii Tribune-Herald

From the Source:

"The class underwent 12 months of intensive instruction, classroom exercises and field work. The recruits received fire and rescue training that included a nationally recognized fire science curriculum, wild land fire training, rescue operations familiarization, aquatics competency certification and driver training."

"Training Capt. Darwin Okinaka and Recruit Training Officer Fire Rescue Specialist James Wilson spoke about the Hawaii Fire Department’s core values as well as stating that the duty of a firefighter is a great honor and privilege that should be earned, not given out as a liberty.

The 43rd firefighter class message was delivered by class president Mark Mochida.

'Training was not easy,' said Mochida, who thanked the chiefs, families, fellow firefighters and trainers. 'Life is going to shovel dirt on you, all kinds of dirt. Shake it off, take a step and learn from it.'"

Ready, Set, Go! - Department Spotlight - HWMO

Our national partner, Ready, Set, Go! covered HWMO's Wildfire Preparedness Program in their first ever "Department Spotlight" as part of their national newsletter. 

From the Source: 

"A Ready, Set, Go (RSG) member since June 2011, Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization (HWMO) is a support organization dedicated to sharing the wildland fire preparedness message through workshops in collaboration with their community partners: schools, community centers, and their local, state and federal fire-response agencies.

The workshops offered by HWMO and their partners are viewed as a two-step process: an initial workshop and a follow-up workshop."

"'Holding these workshops has been a great way to not only spread the RSG message but to get our organization's name out into the public. Through these workshops, we've forged new partnerships with local entities and community members that will translate into future on-the-ground projects. We've also used these workshops as a way to attract residents to our local CWPP update meetings that we've held after the workshops.'"

Above: Series of Ready, Set, Go! Wildfire Preparedness Workshops put on by HWMO.

Above: Series of Ready, Set, Go! Wildfire Preparedness Workshops put on by HWMO.

With Hawaii's Year-Round Fire Season, Residents are Urged to Prepare

Hawaii Wildfire hits the front pages again. Read about how the upcoming wildfire preparedness workshops will prepare you far in advance of a wildfire occurring in your area. 

From the Source: 

"Heavy brush resulting from recent rains, followed by abnormal dryness, has created the ideal conditions for wildfire, and a Waimea-based nonprofit is urging residents to take precautions before the threat occurs. 

Inside the Ocean View Community Center Monday evening, the Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization shared details from its latest wildland fire action guide, with hopes of getting the public to prepare and remember its message of “Ready, Set, Go!” This was the first in a series of hour-long workshops, happening now through Aug. 6 islandwide.

Fire season in Hawaii is a year-round reality, said Elizabeth Pickett, the organization’s executive director. Fires have increased in size, frequency and intensity on all islands over the years, particularly as towns expand into formerly undeveloped places and areas of fallow, invasive or unmanaged vegetation, and as human-caused fires, such as roadside ignitions, have increased.

Pickett also explained how nonnative, fire-adapted vegetation has rapidly spread, not just through wildland landscapes, but also in communities. She said these nonnative grasslands and shrubs now cover nearly a quarter of Hawaii’s total land area, and together with a warming, drying climate, greatly increase fire incidence.

Over the past decade, firefighters statewide battled more than 900 wildland fire ignitions, which burned more than 17,000 acres, each year. In recent years, large fires have occurred in North and South Kohala, North and South Kona, and Ka‘u. Such large fires — those more than 100 acres — are not a novelty, especially when considering data from the Pacific Fire Exchange which shows a steady increase over the past 50 years, Pickett said.

Increases in wildfire pose threats not just to human safety and infrastructure, but also agriculture, native ecosystems, cultural resources, watershed function and nearshore coastal resources, she added.

Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization collected fire records from all the fire response agencies in Hawaii, including the four county fire departments, the state Division of Forestry and Wildlife and Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Department of Defense records were not included because they’re classified for security reasons.

After making the records mapable and compatible, as well as logging the more than 13,500 fires in a database, the nonprofit was able to find trends and patterns of wildfire ignitions on the main Hawaii Islands. The result: “It’s really a lot of roadside ignitions,” Pickett said. “These maps have been a really good communication tool to get some of our decision-makers’ attention about fire prevention needing to be ramped up in regards to wildfire.”

During Monday’s meeting, officials mentioned how studies have shown that as many as 80 percent of the homes lost in wildland fires could have been saved if owners had done a few fire-safe practices. The new wildland action guide, called “Ready, Set, Go!,” offers Hawaii-specific information on how to prepare for wildland fire threat, have “situational awareness” during a fire, and how to leave safely.

Pickett said “Ready, Set, Go!” is the result of a nationwide discussion in the fire service on how to best protect homes, lives and resources in the wildland-urban interface, where development borders a natural area and the ember zone, which is an area where the embers from a wind-driven wildfire can ignite homes.

Pickett claimed the program had its roots in Australia’s “Stay and Defend” wildfire plan, which fire officials in the U.S. objected to because it might cause resources to be diverted from protecting structures to rescuing residents in fire areas. They also thought the risks inherent in not evacuating in advance of a wildfire outweighed any potential benefit.

The guide focuses on building defensible space around homes and structures, sharing materials that can make homes more firesafe, and revealing the impacts caused by wildland fire. It also offers checklists for residents, large landowners and land managers.

Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization began in 2000 and was incorporated two years later by various stakeholders, with the goal of characterizing wildfire threats and developing mitigation strategies. “Meant to be proactive and collaborative,” this nonprofit is “always in cahoots” with its partners, including the Pacific Fire Exchange, state Division of Forestry and Wildlife, University of Hawaii’s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, fire departments, and Civil Defense. The organization supplements and complements with activities already on the ground by doing projects that fit its partners’ needs, Pickett said.

Such projects include: building fuel breaks, putting in infrastructure like dip tanks, water troughs, fittings and adapters, holding workshops on making landscaping fire-wise and best management practices, and doing outreach. The organization also helps create community wildfire protection plans for free and has produced wildfire hazard assessments, which educate residents about the low, moderate and high hazards pertaining to 36 different criteria like ignition risk and water availability in their area.

The latest wildland fire action guide was one of the projects made possible through a $300,000 grant from the U.S. Forest Service, Pickett said.

The other workshops for “Ready, Set, Go!,” beginning at 6 p.m., are tonight at Waikoloa Community Association’s community room, Friday at the Cooper Center in Volcano, Monday at Pahala Elementary School, Tuesday at Thelma Parker Memorial Library in Waimea, July 31 at the West Hawaii Civic Center Liquor Control conference room, Aug. 4 at Konawaena Elementary School and Aug. 6 at the Hawaii Community College West Hawaii campus.

For more information, call 885-0900 or visit hawaiiwildfire.org."

Above: "Firefighters watch a brush fire burn in Kona in July 2013." Credit: West Hawaii Today

Above: "Firefighters watch a brush fire burn in Kona in July 2013." Credit: West Hawaii Today

Helping Mother Nature Fight Fires Native Plant Landscapes and Other Fire Resistant Measures Demonstrated

We made it onto the front page of West Hawaii Today (Sunday edition) - great article recapping the Wildfire Preparedness Day event we held at the Waikoloa Dryland Wildfire Safety Park. The article also covers some of the wildfire issues communities in Hawaii face and some of the steps people can take to protect their homes and families. 

From the Source: 

'Waikoloa Village resident Melissa Newberg vividly remembers the Lalamilo fire of 2005.

Eight months pregnant, she and her family scrambled to pack up photo albums and important papers. As a fire that would ultimately consume 25,000 acres burned fiercely outside the village and helicopters buzzed overhead, the Newbergs evacuated to a friend’s house in Kailua-Kona.

“People were driving on the wrong side of the road. It was pretty chaotic,” she said. “We didn’t know if we would have a house the next day.”

The Newberg home was spared — albeit with a thick layer of ash left on the lanai.

Nine years later, Newberg and her 3-year-old son, Xavier, sat in the Waikoloa Dryland Wildfire Safety Park. While her daughters, Kamila and Alena, placed native plants in the cinder soil nearby, Newberg cleaned up dead leaves.

It is the type of activity the Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization is encouraging everyone to do as the island heads into summer. It is also a cue the western mainland states would do well to follow, as drought and high fuel loads spark wildfire fears on the national level.

The Melia Street wildfire safety park was part of a larger demonstration by the Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization that landscaping with native plants can reduce fire risks around the home. It was a centerpiece of a wildfire awareness event Saturday that also featured informational booths, art projects, presentations and tours of fire engines and emergency vehicles.

Piper Heath, 11, and Sai Cordeiro, 12, were part of a group of youngsters planting seedlings at the park Saturday. They are both members of Waikoloa Future Foresters, a group created three years ago by the Waikoloa Dry Forest Initiative to bring area children in contact with reforestation, fire prevention and other aspects of conservation. Part of their task is to understand the park, help take care of its plants and give tours to the public.

Heath and Cordeiro happened to be planting Cordeiro’s favorite plant, the ihi, a native succulent.

“It’s like a cactus. It holds water,” he explained. “The more water it gets, the more it holds. I like the shape of the leaves and the yellow flowers it gives.”

The park, with plantings of ilima papa, wiliwili and a ground cover called pohinahina, is meant to demonstrate that fire-resistant native plants can be low maintenance, said Pablo Beimler, education and outreach coordinator for Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization.

“These plants are already adapted to the ecosystem and the minerals in the soil,” Beimler said.

They represent a less colorful but wiser choice from a fire safety perspective than the flamboyant bougainvillea, which tends to leave a lot of flammable debris. Beimler said that picking up woody debris from the yard is one of the best ways residents can help prevent fires.

“Where the wind collects all the debris is also where the wind will take the embers,” he said. “That’s scary and it’s not a connection people always make.”

Residents should also put fine screens over their vents — especially at the foundation level — as a key step to keep burning embers from blowing in, Beimler said. Other measures include keeping a “defensible space,” of area cleared of dead vegetation in a 30-foot perimeter around the home — plus making sure grass, trees and other vegetation are trimmed.

A general awareness of the conditions on the surrounding landscape, and a family action plan in time of fire are also important, Beimler said.

“Fire is a mauka to makai issue,” he said. “It affects everything.”

The problem of fire isn’t limited just to ruined forests and homes, said Elizabeth Pickett, Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization’s executive director. Erosion from the exposed land washes downhill and can smother reefs, bringing environmental consequences into the ocean.

“We’re still dealing with the dust and sediment issues from the 2005 and 2007 fires,” she said.'

"Tom Loomis, with the Hawaii Wildlife Management Organization, helps Alena Newberg, 7, as they plant native plants at the Waikoloa Dryland Wildfire Safety Park." Credit - West Hawaii Today

"Tom Loomis, with the Hawaii Wildlife Management Organization, helps Alena Newberg, 7, as they plant native plants at the Waikoloa Dryland Wildfire Safety Park." Credit - West Hawaii Today

"Firefighter Chuck Segawa gives 12-year-old Micah Canionero a tour of a fire truck during the day of fire preparedness at Waikoloa Dryland Wildfire Safety Park on Saturday." Credit - West Hawaii Today

"Firefighter Chuck Segawa gives 12-year-old Micah Canionero a tour of a fire truck during the day of fire preparedness at Waikoloa Dryland Wildfire Safety Park on Saturday." Credit - West Hawaii Today

"Firefighter Paul Higgins gives keiki a tour of a fire truck during the day of fire preparedness at Waikoloa Dryland Safety Park on Saturday." Credit - West Hawaii Today

"Firefighter Paul Higgins gives keiki a tour of a fire truck during the day of fire preparedness at Waikoloa Dryland Safety Park on Saturday." Credit - West Hawaii Today

Wildfire Community Preparedness Day is Saturday in Waikoloa

From the Source: 

"Big Islanders are invited to activities Saturday in Waikoloa in observance of the first Wildfire Community Preparedness Day focused on reducing the risk of wildfire damage in Hawaii by encouraging community volunteers, neighborhoods and individual homeowners to join forces in creating safer places to live. 

State Farm, the National Fire Protection Association and Fire Adapted Communities are cosponsoring the event.

From 9 a.m.-2:30 p.m., there will be volunteer gardening and wildfire workshops, field tours and lots of info and tips, plus Smokey the Bear, at the Dryland Safety Park in Waikoloa Village, said coordinator Pablo Beimler, of the Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization (HWMO), a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting communities and natural resources from the devastating effects of wildfire.

For more information, visit www.hawaiiwildfire.org, email Beimler at pablo@hawaiiwildfire.org, or call 885-0900.

On Wildfire Preparedness Day, communities across the nation are rallying to host a variety of events to help raise wildfire awareness, promote collaboration and bring neighbors together to work on projects that protect homes, neighborhoods and entire communities.

'We at HWMO are organizing a Fire Awareness, Prevention &Work Day event at the Waikoloa Dryland Safety Park in Waikoloa Village,' said Beimler. 'We will be holding a volunteer work session in the morning followed by a series of wildfire preparedness workshops, field tours and activities. All ages are welcome, and the event is free.'

At HWMO headquarters in Waimea, volunteers recently received 10,000 copies of the first-ever Hawaii version of the 'Ready, Set, Go! Wildland Fire Action Guide.'"

"Fire fighters work to control a brush fire near mile marker 50 on Hawaii Belt Road (Highway 11) in Kau Tuesday afternoon." Credit: Hollyn Johnson/Tribune-Herald 

"Fire fighters work to control a brush fire near mile marker 50 on Hawaii Belt Road (Highway 11) in Kau Tuesday afternoon." Credit: Hollyn Johnson/Tribune-Herald 

Fun Fire Preparedness Education Day Planned at Waikoloa Dryland Wildfire Safety Park on May 3

We made it onto a full page spread on North Hawaii News about our upcoming Wildfire Preparedness Day event at the Waikoloa Dryland Wildfire Safety Park this Saturday, May 3rd!

From the Source: 

"Fire takes no holiday, and the Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization is organizing a day of fire preparedness at the Waikoloa Dryland Wildfire Safety Park in Waikoloa Village on Saturday, May 3, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Melia Street in Waikoloa. Activities include a firefighter meet and greet, student-led garden tours, a keiki activity station, and a visit from Smokey the Bear. Wildfire preparedness workshops and guest speakers will also be on hand to teach community members how they can help prevent wildfires and protect their homes.

'It’s the first ever National Wildfire Preparedness Day,' said Pablo Beimler, education and outreach coordinator for Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization. 'The idea is to have communities from all over the nation participate in wildfire awareness and hold these events. This is a great way to show that Hawaii has wildfire issues and that communities are taking charge and getting involved.'

'Almost all of the fires in the state of Hawaii are from humans,' said Elizabeth Pickett, executive director of HWMO. 'Whether it’s intentional or accidental they’re all human caused. Preventing ignition is key. Fire goes where there’s fuel, and we consider fuel to be vegetation, leaf litter, tree debris, branches and anything that’s combustible. It’s important to maintain your landscaping. You want your house 10 feet clear of debris, dried grass, or brush. You want your grass short. You also want to harden your home. By that we mean converting as much as you can around your home to non-combustible building materials. For example replacing wood fences with stone, or replacing wooden shingles with metal roofing.'

Waikoloa is the most fire prone subdivision, not just on Hawaii Island, but in the entire state.

'Waikoloa is vulnerable to large-scale, destructive wildfires like the one in 2005 that could have wiped out the entire village,' said Beimler. 'The idea is to really ramp up our efforts in Waikoloa and let people know there are things they can do to protect their homes and prevent wildfires.'

HWMO is anxious about the upcoming fire season and hopes that educational events like National Wildfire Preparedness Day will help educate the community and subsequently prevent possible ignitions.

'With all the recent rain and all the recent vegetative growth, we are getting really nervous about the upcoming fire season,' said Pickett. 'There’s predicted drought conditions, and although we have a lot of rain right now, in the future it looks like the vegetation will likely dry out and it will be at high risk of wildfire. We want to get the message out early on.'

Research shows that Hawaii has a higher proportion of fire-prone acres than any of the 17 western-most states. HWMO educates the community by raising awareness through proactive planning and prevention efforts. They created the first and only fire preparedness demonstration garden in Hawaii, The Waikoloa Dryland Wildfire Safety Park. The garden teaches community members how to reduce the impact of wildfires through defensible space, firewise landscaping and fire resistant building materials. This garden is primarily made up of low-maintenance, native Hawaiian species that are resistant to drought, wind, and heat.

'A fire can only go where things can burn,' said Pickett. 'The idea is to interrupt that process and make the fire go somewhere else - not straight toward your house. You can do that by managing your vegetation, your grass and your leaf litter. It’s important to do all that ahead of time so the fire can’t damage your home.'

The best defense against wildfire is preparation and prevention. Saturday’s event hopes to provide lessons that will assist the community with protecting their property.

HWMO is working with the following organizations to put on this event: Hawaii Fire Department, Waikoloa Community Association, Waikoloa Community Emergency Response Team, Waikoloa Dry Forest Initiative, Waikoloa Outdoor Circle, and Malama Kai Foundation.

For more information contact, pablo@hawaiiwildfire.org or visit Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization at www.hawaiiwildfire.org."

Above: Community members from Waikoloa Village pose for a photo after hard work removing weeds from the garden on March 7 after a long period of rainfall. Credit - HWMO

Above: Community members from Waikoloa Village pose for a photo after hard work removing weeds from the garden on March 7 after a long period of rainfall. Credit - HWMO

Wildfire Preparedness Day 2014

Thank you to the Waikoloa Breeze for highlighting our upcoming event: Wildfire Preparedness Day 2014 at the Waikoloa Dryland Wildfire Safety Park at the end of Melia St. in Waikoloa!

Click the photo above to get a better view.

Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization and Pacific Fire Exchange

Thank you to North Hawaii News for profiling Hawaii Wildfire's efforts along with Pacific Fire Exchange's!

From the Source:

"HWMO’s mission is to work with communities to be more fire wise and to reduce the risk of wildfires. Headquartered in Waimea, the organization’s outreach includes educational activities, fuels management projects — to reduce anything that will fuel a fire — restoration of native plants, research and even assisting in the development of K-8 curriculum on fire knowledge.

About 40 people attended HWMO’s annual meeting at the Pohakuloa Training Area last week to network and receive updates on the organization’s projects. Among those participating were representatives from the University of Hawaii Fire Management, Parker Ranch Fire Protection, Hawaii State Fish and Wildlife, Hawaii Island Native Seed Bank, and Rep. Cindy Evans, D-North Kona, Kohala."

Above: Participants from various wildfire organizations gather at Mauna Kea State Park on July 20 to discuss events of the 2010 fire that burned 25,000 acres. (PHOTO BY CYNTHIA SWEENEY| SPECIAL TO NHN)

Above: Participants from various wildfire organizations gather at Mauna Kea State Park on July 20 to discuss events of the 2010 fire that burned 25,000 acres. (PHOTO BY CYNTHIA SWEENEY| SPECIAL TO NHN)