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Escaping a forestfire, or suburban fire.

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savageagle

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I have been in a few very huge fires and have trained with an emergency blanket which protected me from the radiated heat as well as the flames. In the 10-20 seconds it took for the fire to move over me it felt like minutes. I had just enough time to deploy my
Eblanket making sure my boots and gloves covered at least an inch of the blanket to keep it from going away with the fire.
I have seen fire move 60 feet in just a few seconds which does not give you much time to think about what decision you'll make.
Being prepared with the proper knowledge will definately give you a better chance of staying alive.
DO NOT PANIC? Being covered by something that can save your life but consumed by fire, wind and noise creates a situation of panic unless you are highly trained. Panic is a natural human insinct that takes alot of preperation and training to over come.
In the mid 90's a firefighter on a northern california forestfire deployed his emergency blanket perfectly and in time but when the fire was upon him he failed to stay put in panic and burned to death.
A huge, hot and fast moving fire DOES NOT need to be in a forest.
You can have the same situation and effects in a suburban fire.
Anywhere you experience a fire it can be deadly.
The odds are low that in a buggout situation you may come accross a forest fire. If you do
the following information could save your life.
Escaping a forest fire.........
Stay calm.
Fires usually look closer than they are because there is much smoke, fire and movement. The fact that we
rarely encounter forest fires or have a clear view of the size of the trees that are burning does not let us make
a proportionate projection of the distance.
Prepare to leave the area as soon as you detect a fire, even at a distance, because if it is a crown fire, with a wind, it
can be upon you in no time.
A fire CAN outrun you.
Plan an escape route and a backup route if you are cutoff.
Travell downhill if the fire is close, remember that fire travels four or five times faster uphill than downhill.
DO NOT climb a canyon wall or steep slope because they are excellent chimneys in the spread of a fire.
Keep your body covered with natural materials such as cotton or wool. DO NOT use synthetics which will
melt in the heat and stick to your body and possibly burn.
DO NOT wet your clothing because the water will scald your skin when heated.
Use DRY sand or dirt to cover your body.
DO NOT wear a backpack made of synthetic material because it might melt or burn and stick to your back.
Discard any stove fuels that you might be carrying because it might explode in the heat of the fire.
Lie with your face to the ground.
If the fire front is low consider jumping into the burnt area but make sure your skin and hair are covered.
In a smokey fire area DO NOT take deep breathes. Breathe through a piece of dry cloth. If the cloth is wet the hot air from the fire will produce steam and will damage your lungs.
Remember that a large fire can consume all the oxygen for the duration of a few minutes. Be prepared for this possibilty and
DO NOT panic.
DO NOT hide in caves or airtight enclosed areas because the fire will use up the oxygen and you could suffocate.

Choose a Protective area.
Stay on dry ground, on rocks, in a depression or in a pond or stream. Make sure there is no fuel that can burn.
The middle of a slope has the highest potential for a hot fire. The lower areas of a slope are usually more humid and the middle area would be dryer and probably has a more dense growth than the top of the hill. The middle of the hill could be dangerous because of an updraft.
The southern sides of hills are dryer and have a higher potential for quick burning fires.
Find a depression in the ground. Clear the ground of any possible fuels. DO NOT remove your clothing. Bury your face in the earth. If the soil is loose and dry, push some over yourself. Cover yourself with some heavy non-synthetic cloth or blanket. This is to avoid the searing heat of the fire. The fire will sweep over you in a few minutes.
If you cannot find a secure area consider entering a burnt out area in which you can find protection from larger fires.

In a Car and fire is approaching.
Choose the area where you will ride out the fire. Consider an open area that DOES NOT have much fuel so that the fire will pass over very rapidly.
Avoid wooded areas because burning trees might fall on you.
DO NOT park in a depressed area such as a narrow valley because forest fires have a higher concentrated heat intensity in confined areas.
Close all openings in a car such as windows and air intakes.
Turn off the vehicle and trun on the lights so that other vehicles can see you.
Lie down on the floor of the car and cover yourself with a non-synthetic blanket or clothing.
You might even remove the rear seat to provide more space. The seat coverings are synthetic.
As mentioned in the fire types section it might be very windy. The car might rock and it can be very noisy but DO NOT panic. Exit the car as soon as the fire has passed. The odds are that the gas tank will not explode but DO NOT stay near the car after the fire has moved on. Move away as soon as possible.
The scenerio of a forestfire is more likely going to be a suburban fire which in most cases can move faster than you could ever imagine. The above info applies to any fire with plenty of fuel and wind to get it moving very rapidly. A firestorm is a reality whether it's in a forest or a neigborhood, it's deadly but can be survivable with the right knowledge.
 

Wiredog8

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I have been in a few very huge fires and have trained with an emergency blanket which protected me from the radiated heat as well as the flames. In the 10-20 seconds it took for the fire to move over me it felt like minutes. I had just enough time to deploy my
Eblanket making sure my boots and gloves covered at least an inch of the blanket to keep it from going away with the fire.
I have seen fire move 60 feet in just a few seconds which does not give you much time to think about what decision you'll make.
Being prepared with the proper knowledge will definately give you a better chance of staying alive.
DO NOT PANIC? Being covered by something that can save your life but consumed by fire, wind and noise creates a situation of panic unless you are highly trained. Panic is a natural human insinct that takes alot of preperation and training to over come.
In the mid 90's a firefighter on a northern california forestfire deployed his emergency blanket perfectly and in time but when the fire was upon him he failed to stay put in panic and burned to death.
A huge, hot and fast moving fire DOES NOT need to be in a forest.
You can have the same situation and effects in a suburban fire.
Anywhere you experience a fire it can be deadly.
The odds are low that in a buggout situation you may come accross a forest fire. If you do
the following information could save your life.
Escaping a forest fire.........
Stay calm.
Fires usually look closer than they are because there is much smoke, fire and movement. The fact that we
rarely encounter forest fires or have a clear view of the size of the trees that are burning does not let us make
a proportionate projection of the distance.
Prepare to leave the area as soon as you detect a fire, even at a distance, because if it is a crown fire, with a wind, it
can be upon you in no time.
A fire CAN outrun you.
Plan an escape route and a backup route if you are cutoff.
Travell downhill if the fire is close, remember that fire travels four or five times faster uphill than downhill.
DO NOT climb a canyon wall or steep slope because they are excellent chimneys in the spread of a fire.
Keep your body covered with natural materials such as cotton or wool. DO NOT use synthetics which will
melt in the heat and stick to your body and possibly burn.
DO NOT wet your clothing because the water will scald your skin when heated.
Use DRY sand or dirt to cover your body.
DO NOT wear a backpack made of synthetic material because it might melt or burn and stick to your back.
Discard any stove fuels that you might be carrying because it might explode in the heat of the fire.
Lie with your face to the ground.
If the fire front is low consider jumping into the burnt area but make sure your skin and hair are covered.
In a smokey fire area DO NOT take deep breathes. Breathe through a piece of dry cloth. If the cloth is wet the hot air from the fire will produce steam and will damage your lungs.
Remember that a large fire can consume all the oxygen for the duration of a few minutes. Be prepared for this possibilty and
DO NOT panic.
DO NOT hide in caves or airtight enclosed areas because the fire will use up the oxygen and you could suffocate.

Choose a Protective area.
Stay on dry ground, on rocks, in a depression or in a pond or stream. Make sure there is no fuel that can burn.
The middle of a slope has the highest potential for a hot fire. The lower areas of a slope are usually more humid and the middle area would be dryer and probably has a more dense growth than the top of the hill. The middle of the hill could be dangerous because of an updraft.
The southern sides of hills are dryer and have a higher potential for quick burning fires.
Find a depression in the ground. Clear the ground of any possible fuels. DO NOT remove your clothing. Bury your face in the earth. If the soil is loose and dry, push some over yourself. Cover yourself with some heavy non-synthetic cloth or blanket. This is to avoid the searing heat of the fire. The fire will sweep over you in a few minutes.
If you cannot find a secure area consider entering a burnt out area in which you can find protection from larger fires.

In a Car and fire is approaching.
Choose the area where you will ride out the fire. Consider an open area that DOES NOT have much fuel so that the fire will pass over very rapidly.
Avoid wooded areas because burning trees might fall on you.
DO NOT park in a depressed area such as a narrow valley because forest fires have a higher concentrated heat intensity in confined areas.
Close all openings in a car such as windows and air intakes.
Turn off the vehicle and trun on the lights so that other vehicles can see you.
Lie down on the floor of the car and cover yourself with a non-synthetic blanket or clothing.
You might even remove the rear seat to provide more space. The seat coverings are synthetic.
As mentioned in the fire types section it might be very windy. The car might rock and it can be very noisy but DO NOT panic. Exit the car as soon as the fire has passed. The odds are that the gas tank will not explode but DO NOT stay near the car after the fire has moved on. Move away as soon as possible.
The scenerio of a forestfire is more likely going to be a suburban fire which in most cases can move faster than you could ever imagine. The above info applies to any fire with plenty of fuel and wind to get it moving very rapidly. A firestorm is a reality whether it's in a forest or a neigborhood, it's deadly but can be survivable with the right knowledge.

Great info. Like how you listed everything step by step.
Thank you so much.
 

anoymous

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your lucky that fire went right over you, i have seen people in there blankets, and the fire was still burning over them for 45 min
 

savageagle

HamRadio/Office of Emergency Services/Fire-EMT-SAR
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A ridge is usually a destination for a fire as it travels and if the sides below the ridge are steep then you'll most likely have a fast and hot fire speeding up to the ridge. The best place is just below the ridge opposite the fire and your escape route would be down opposite the fire coming up. I'd stay as long as I could to observe the fire's actions then make your escape either down from the ridge on the opposie side or if the fire allows follow the ridge one way or another. It's a decision you can't make unless you can see and observe what the fire is doing. At least what I have experienced, I like to keep an eye on the fire so I can make a better decision on what I should do. it's like being close to a falling tree, most would just run. You need to take a few seconds to see where the tree is falling and based on what you see you can make a better decision on which way is best to run.
 

savageagle

HamRadio/Office of Emergency Services/Fire-EMT-SAR
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Location
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I guess in a situation where your not going to have any choice, I'd choose to be just below the ridge in an area that I know the fire will be moving very fast to deploy my fire blanket. It would be scary as hell but my chances of survival would be better because the fire would race over me quicker. at the top of the ridge the fire would still be very hot but would have stalled a bit and take longer to burn over you and would decrease your chances of survival.
 

savageagle

HamRadio/Office of Emergency Services/Fire-EMT-SAR
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Squaw Valley, California, USA, EARTH
Some of the above information is quoted from my outdoor survival bible. The actual step-by-step stuff.
appreciate the thanks but it's just sharing of what others may find useful for thier survival.
I believe thats part of what this site is all about. To share your knowledge with other members so that ALL us preppers may survive whenever and whatever hits the fan.
 

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