Advances in Fire Practice

Recent AFP Articles


Fire Science Postings

By Josh McDaniel

The San Carlos Apache fire staff has been working to reintroduce fire to the land through an expanding prescribed fire and managed wildfire program. In the spring of 2014, the new approach to fire was on full display…
(8min 50s)


Nine large fires have occurred on the Colorado Front Range since the turn of the century, beginning with the 2002 Hayman Fire, which burned 138,000 acres and destroyed 138 homes southwest of Denver.…
(4 pg., 148 kb)

By Rick Stratton

The purpose of this white paper is to discuss fires on the Colorado Front Range and to share initial observations of fire behavior and home destruction during the Waldo Canyon Fire.
(9 pg., 2.1 MB PDF)


This  document  describes  the  motivations,  outcomes,  and  lessons  learned from the merger of state and federal dispatch responsibilities in southern  Arizona.  Interviews  were  conducted  with  dispatch  personnel  involved in the merger as well as outside specialists to gain insights into the benefits and challenges of the process.

(PDF, 1.39 MB)


Video series that seeks to help people understand the bark beetle outbreak in our forests and shares actions the U.S. Forest Service is taking to respond to the outbreak on the Medicine Bow and Routt National Forests. The series covers the connections between bark beetles, fire, recreation, watersheds, wildlife, and timber among others.

(10 videos, 4-6 mins each)


By Stephen Pyne

On April 19 2014, a small storm cell passed over the Nantanes Plateau, shedding virga and dry lightning. The next day a fire was sighted among grass and shrubs above Skunk Creek.
(13 pg., 570 KB PDF)


On the afternoon of May 20, the Slide Fire was reported towards the south end of Oak Creek Canyon between Flagstaff and Sedona, Arizona. The canyon is steep and rugged - not the type of country that firefighters prefer for taking on a fire directly. Fire managers decided to use a confine-and-contain strategy..
(11 mins 26 sec, July 22, 2014)


The use of RPAs on wildland fires represents a relatively new technology for Incident Management Teams (IMTs). The IMT was able to use an RPA resource supported by elements of the California Army National Guard J-6 Emergency Communications and Air National Guard 163d Reconnaissance Wing.
(3 pg., 205 KB PDF)

Also, Read the Advances in Fire Practice article on the Use of RPAs on the Rim Fire


The Barry Point Fire burned in an area that was predisposed to large fire growth with rapid spread rates and high resistance to control. The Fire Behavior/Fire Review, written by Rick Stratton, describes 1) the fire environment, 2) observed fire behavior and spread, and 3) predicted fire movement and communities at risk.

(8 pg., 2 MB PDF)

Vast stands of ponderosa pine stretch across the Gila National Forest, a testament to the role of fire in this corner of the Southwest. For decades, fire managers on the Gila have been reintroducing fire back on to the landscape. This SW Fire Science Consortium video introduces some of the people behind the Gila fire story. 
(9 mins 43 sec, July 16, 2013)

Accompanying PDF article (8 pg, 1.5 MB)

Over the past two decades the size of wildfires has dramatically increased across the Southwest. These large burned areas have become so common that newer wildfires are burning into and around them. In this SW Fire Science Consortium video, fire managers discuss their use these previous burns as treatments that either stop or slow fire spread.
(12 mins 25 sec, Jan 30, 2013)

Accompanying PDF article (8 pg, 1.5 MB)

This SW Fire Science Consortium video describes mastication fuel treatments in the Southwest. Covers treatment effectiveness during recent large wildfires and also describes the benefits and potential drawbacks of mastication fuel treatments.
(11:08, Nov 26, 2012)

Accompanying PDF article (10 pg, 1.2 MB)

For the latest updates in fire science please visit: Joint Fire Science Program

Recent Webinars

May 20, 2 PM MDT, Scott Goodrick and Jason Forthofer Vortices and Wildland Fire  *** VIEW RECORDED WEBINAR ***

May 7, 1 PM MDT, Marty Alexander and Miguel Cruz Crown Fire Behavior in Conifer Forests  *** VIEW RECORDED WEBINAR ***

Mar 31, 1 PM MDT, Matt Busse Diggin’ Dirt:  Fuel reduction practices and their effects on soil health  ***VIEW RECORDED WEBINAR***





Most Popular Webinars

Dave Calkin reviews several recent studies that attempt to understand how suppression actions influence fire progression as well as review variation among Incident Management Teams in the amount of resources that they use to manage large wildland fires in the US.

(1:08. October 17, 2014)


Sarah McCaffrey discusses social issues in fire management with emphasis on the accuracy of some "conventional wisdom" about the public and views of fuels and fire management.

(1:19:00. February 27, 2013)


Esther Godson describes the use of emerging technologies on the fire line.

(0:57.19 November 20, 2012)


A panel of experts discuss the indicators of heat illnesses, the physiology of heat illnesses for appropriate mitigations, and examples of mitigations used successfully by IMT and IHC crews in extreme conditions.

(1:29:02, May 17, 2012)


Planning and executing any prescribed burn can be considered a complex process. The complexities can grow exponentially, both in size and in number, if the burn is in the wildland urban interface (WUI). One of the variables that makes burning in the WUI so challenging, is the neighbors themselves.

(1:15:53, June 12, 2013)