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February 28, 2008

Argentina Wildfire, The News Spread Like, Well...

Kind of amazing a smaller sized fire could get such International attention so quickly.

Source: Reuters
" BUENOS AIRES, Feb 28 (Reuters) - Wildfires burned at a national park in Argentina's Patagonia region on Thursday, threatening to destroy trees up to thousands of years old, and the government called for residents in the area to evacuate. The Alerces National Park is a protected area of 650,000 acres (263,000 hectares) in the Andes region of Chubut province, near the border with Chile. The blaze, which government officials said was intentionally set, has destroyed more than 1,730 acres (700 hectares) in the area, according to state news agency Telam.


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February 26, 2008

Texas Burning, Evacuations & Firefighter Injuries

From Fox News:

"Fire officials were waiting for daylight Tuesday to assess the scope of one massive wildfire stretching across Sterling, Reagan and Irion counties in Central Texas that could be as large as 500,000 acres, said David Abernathy, an incident commander with the forest service. Airplanes will fly over the fire during daylight Tuesday to obtain more accurate mapping data, he said.

At one point the blaze moved so quickly — fueled by 50 mph winds — that flames were consuming an area the size of "a football field every minute," Abernathy said.

Three firefighters were injured in Archer County when two fire trucks collided head on after one swerved around a car that pulled out into the road, Abernathy said. One of the firefighters was airlifted to an area hospital, an Archer County dispatcher said. He survived but his condition was unknown.

Abernathy said he was aware of at least two dozen separate fires across the state and expected there were "many, many more that we won't know about" until local fire departments report in."

Texas is getting hammered in early 08, wildfires have burned about 100,000 acres and destroyed about 60 homes and other structures in the past month . Two years ago, numerous outbreaks scorched 2.25 million acres statewide and killed 20 people. read more here!


February 18, 2008

Bird Flu, The Simmering Pandemic?


I know, the title is a little over the top but is it really? Fox News provides details of a 22 year old man who died from avian or 'bird flu' in Jianghua County of Hunan's Yongzhou City China.

"Tests confirmed the boy had H5N1"

More than 225 people have died worldwide from the virus, according to the World Health Organization reports Fox.

I have posted on this subject in the past and my chief concern, aside from the potential threat to my family and friends is the effect a pandemic, or even an outbreak would pose to first responders.
Bird flu, or H5N1 is not going away any time soon. When you read the strain is centering on poultry and then consider everyone in rural China or Indonesia raises chickens it seems inevitable a mutated form of the virus will take hold.

More on the virus from Wikipedia.

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February 14, 2008

Oklahoma Wildfires, It's Starting Early

They may be small but just the fact vegetation is burning at all in Southwest Oklahoma in mid February is newsworthy. Not a whole lot of mainstream press on it yet but here is some local coverage.

Starting early this year!

Hobbyist Builds Lego Firefighter


Dave from Brickplayer Lego put together this Lego firefighter.

February 12, 2008

Wildfires Burn In Virginia and Carolinas

Hard to believe but AP via Google News reports the following;

"Investigators went to work Monday trying to figure out what ignited hundreds of weekend wildfires that chased some residents from churches and led others to seek them out for sanctuary.

The wind that had fanned the flames in the rain-starved Carolinas and Virginia had died down Monday. The earliest rain in the forecast for South Carolina was Tuesday.

Because of the high wind and wildfires, both Democratic presidential hopefuls — Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama — canceled appearances scheduled in Roanoke, Va. Virginia's presidential primaries are on Tuesday. Thousands of customers in the region still had no electricity because of damage caused by the fires and wind.

About 60 homes in Conway were briefly evacuated Sunday when a fire sent smoke billowing above the city of about 11,000 people, about 15 miles northwest of Myrtle Beach.

Lewis Cooper fled the flames — one of South Carolina's 111 forest fires — with his wife, and said the heat was intense from hundreds of feet away....."

Local blog coverage.


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February 10, 2008

Blue Angels -- Simply Amazing

Still here......no fires burning....in the Northern Hemishere anyway.
In the meantime, enjoy this.

More images here.