Has the wildfires significantly changed your preparedness or life plans?

Has the wildfires significantly changed your preparedness or life plans?

  • Yes! Major life plans have changed because of this.

    Votes: 1 1.9%
  • Yes, to an extent, life plans changed. It is a significant data point, but not the main reason.

    Votes: 5 9.4%
  • No major life changes, but preps are changing significantly.

    Votes: 14 26.4%
  • Naw, not really.

    Votes: 22 41.5%
  • I don't live in an area prone to wildfires, so doesn't really apply.

    Votes: 10 18.9%
  • Um, eh (bromp!), what wuz duh ques'n again?

    Votes: 1 1.9%

  • Total voters
    53
This years wildfires were, obviously pretty bad. Last year in these parts were bad too, with a fire very close to our place. And, most importantly, everything I read indicates it will only get worse in the Pacific Northwest and California. Some factors are not going to change, while others could, but there societal realities ensure they won't.

So, has this factor dramatically changed your preparedness plans? Life plans in general?

Thanks for sharing.
 

The Heretic

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Yes.

Previously I had planned on keeping almost all of my preps here at home - which serves as my BOL. I had always considered wildfire a risk, but it wasn't until after I evacuated that I realized that most of my preps were at risk from the fire.

So I want to move at least some of my ammo - at least a battle loadout for three people - to a separate location. Also, I want to have a better plan for evacuating/bugging out - I did a really poor job bugging out last week. I need to be better organized and have a better plan.

Long term, I had always had hoped to relocate further out and have a better layout for defense and sustainability, including taking into account wildfire. Short term, I need to get some better preps for wildfire defense - e.g., fire retardant.
 
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Yes.

Not so much for being prepared because you can LOSE IT ALL in a fire, flood or for any other weather related or man made reason NO matter how much you prepare and load up your vehicle in a smart and simple manner.

I do not prepare in the same manner that some people prepare. To each their own.

Breathing and other physical issues that this crapola AIR causes to the body, mind and spirit not even counting what it does to your home IS an issue to me.

The 'fire seasons' last much LONGER in time and the extreme toxic AIR is a burden to me. It is a burden to people who were born and raised here too.

Basically, I am sick of it all and may move whether I keep this house or NOT.

Cate
 

gryghin

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Our oldest evac'ed to our place in Beaverton. We were planning on moving out towards them in Yamhill County but may rethink a complete move.

Still processing the long term planning changes.

Short term, all that hurricane preparation growing up in the South works here in the PNW. Will have to tweak supplies as the family grows but things went well.
 

The Heretic

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Our oldest evac'ed to our place in Beaverton. We were planning on moving out towards them in Yamhill County but may rethink a complete move.

Still processing the long term planning changes.

Short term, all that hurricane preparation growing up in the South works here in the PNW. Will have to tweak supplies as the family grows but things went well.
I drove out to Carlton the other day - while it was still plenty smoky, I saw plenty of places (mostly farms) that would be fairly defensible against wildfire, especially if you had a tractor and a disc/harrow - a lot of open ground that could be disc'd up and turned into a fire break easily and quickly. Neighbor's (catty corner to my property) did this with their field during the fire - a field of wheat stubble - they even left the tractor there (probably to be able to disc up other fields - although there weren't many).

On top of having open ground to provide a fire break - other neighbors had just built a house - it had a metal roof and metal siding, their house next door did also, as did their shop they just built - all good defenses against wildfire.

One house out towards Carlton was on the the top of a decent sized hill on the farm surrounded by open ground - not only a defense against fire, but a decent defensive position against marauders (IMO - I am not an expert on that) as they had a clear field of fire for at least 500 yard (although it was visible from the road, which I do not like).

I am still very much wanting to move further out, and Yamhill county is a strong candidate for me, but if I do move, it will be to land that is much more level (gently sloping to the south) and I would strongly prefer land where I have some open ground around the house/shop but at the same time less visible from a main road.
 

FortRock

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Pretty safe here. A lot of dry grass though. Mowed a perimeter around the pastures and keep the 55 gal. Fimco sprayer loaded with water and hooked up to the tractor.

Until we resume logging and managing our forests it will continue to burn every year until it is all gone. I wonder how many spotted owls are left in Oregon.
 

The Heretic

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All them thar city folks running to the hills, thinkn theys safe! ROFLMAO! Guess waht natur is - fire, flood, and famine. Haint changed in a milleniun!
Well, the one good thing about being on a mountain as I am, is I don't worry about floods - just the fires and wind. In our case, it was human stupidity - I am given to understand that the people at fault were recent transplants. :rolleyes:
 

The Heretic

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Pretty safe here. A lot of dry grass though. Mowed a perimeter around the pastures and keep the 55 gal. Fimco sprayer loaded with water and hooked up to the tractor.
I have been thinking of getting a fire pump on a skid with tanks for years - especially last year when I was burning slash piles. Going to raise the subject with neighbors and see if they want to contribute some $ to buy something - we just spent $80K+ on paving our private road, so it makes sense to me to each spend maybe $1K each to go in on a fire pump and some tanks.

OTOH - local TVFR is just 4 miles away and they get up here within minutes when we call them - but just the same...

Until we resume logging and managing our forests it will continue to burn every year until it is all gone. I wonder how many spotted owls are left in Oregon.
We (local landowners) logged about 500 acres in 2018 - and about 50 acres in 2014, so we have some clear cut that is now replant with mostly grass and brush until the replant takes over - so all that acreage (which is between us and the where the fire was) would go up fairly quickly if it caught fire this time of year. TVFR fought pretty hard to keep that from happening, but my understanding is it was a close thing - if it had jumped the road that 1200' of grass and brush would probably have taken less than 30 minutes to reach my woods, then another 300 feet of trees and my house would have been cinders.

Granted, there are now logging skid roads where there were not before, so TVFR could have fought it easier, but still - that stretch of grass and brush on steep gullies scares me should it ever catch fire - I kept a close eye on it when we were burning the slash piles and stopped when it got too dry (only took about a week of nice weather), then spent the spring and summer putting out small fires from the piles - every morning and night I would go over and dump water on the piles - it wasn't until the rains came that I finally could relax.
 

The Heretic

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Talking with neighbor now about fire pump and tanks setup (portable tanks, and possibly a very large stationary tank to refill the portables - PGE cut our power within minutes of the evac order, so without a backup power source we could not fill from the wells, and even if we could, that would be pretty slow; it would take ten minutes or more to refill a 200-300 gallon tank using a std well pump - at best).
 
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In farm/ranch country, ALL across this nation including in the Great Lakes region, the Northern Plains and up/down the East Coast, farmers/ranchers plow up a BREAK LINE and they keep it plowed/disked up so to speak.

Most people with common sense will do this no matter where they live.

Even if they have woods and forests butt up to their FARM land AND live in a state that may have had a former swamp DRAINED with drainage ditches put in - in parts of a township, they have good black and VERY productive SOIL, they have LOTS OF RAIN, plenty of snow/ice and moderate to HUMID temps - they still do this BREAK line AND some farmers/ranchers even have their own controlled burns on their farm fields with their local VD and/or paid FD departments to help them out.

I know this for a fact and my late husband was a Volunteer Fireman, he taught classes in another county/township as a Volunteer a few times, he taught/trained/worked/volunteered in his own township, and he was an EMT too. He had other positions over the years in his VFD other than when he was in the military (USN) all over the world and Nam era. He was active even during his AIR NG time and with his regular NON .gov job too.

I saw controlled burns back east. Most of the time, they were NOT needed to be done every single year or that often because the farmers KNEW how to care for their land AND it was in a NORMAL wet climate. NORMAL to me. LOL

I saw these controlled burns when I moved out west too. Plenty of them in ND and all across the upper northern part of the country on and off for over 2,000 miles (My trip mileage one way.) just under Canada. Middle to late spring time.

The ranchers/farmers will make a donation or even pay extra money so those Volunteers and PAID departments get some training in.

Side note:

To The Heretic, my late husband was on a small board when they had to buy a new fire truck or two over the years. Plus he was one of a FEW people who helped buy (Using TAXPAYER money and donations.) a not too old TANKER truck on a good frame and his township department BUILT their own water tanker too. (Not counting fixing up some OLD antique fire truck too!) He built (Prototypes.) some things that FIT on the tanker and got the good quality stainless steel at discounted price - @ COST. He did ALL of the work for free as Volunteers do.

Some old and young farmers COMPLAINED about the COST of the stainless steel material even though the bill was there and there were other estimates BEFORE the purchase of the material was made.

ALL of his labor was free and it was a complicated FITTING. Other things were BUILT TO SPEC too. My late husband and some other men told the complaining farmers that IF they wanted the work done right and the equipment to work properly in an emergency situation... it was NOT going to be done 'cheap' and if they wanted a POS - they could rig up their half @@@ed bailing wire, twine and scrap and DO IT themselves. NOT all of the farmers said this but there were always two of them who complained and they never showed up for DRILLS most of the time too. Go figure!

The LAST that I heard - that old tanker is still running and the PARTS still work well on it too. I believe that the old antique fire truck is still used for parades and other things too.

LOOK for all insurance rates to rise even if your house is not damaged or destroyed by fire or flood or any other disaster due to your geographic region. This goes for all people across this nation.

Insurance companies require and/or judge all of these fires on an annual basis with their RISK figures. Same as for ambulance runs too.

ADD on the fact, that if a SPECIFIC township (Like back east - they do not have 'townships' here in MT.) in ONE county that does not have UP to date or modern fire trucks - they will RAISE your insurance costs and in one county alone - you can see the quotes with various townships that do or do NOT have more modern equipment.

It is a vicious circle - pay more taxes (Higher real estate taxes.) or pay higher insurance rates or PAY BOTH at the same time.

Out west, there are far more private fire fighting companies and not just community volunteers from what I gather. I know that they have paid departments too! A few men on here may have had their own companies too. I think that one man has spoken about it here on and off.

If you do DECIDE to stay where you are and not move... you and your neighbors can get some quotes on buying your own equipment providing you have the MANPOWER on hand to RUN IT or check out a private fire fighting company on top of what your TAX DOLLARS already pay for now.

The Heretic, YOU already know how to run, totally operate all of YOUR own equipment, you can fix it, maintain it on a regular basis, etc. YOU should be good to go since you actually have the brains, common sense and physical strength (Most of the time!) to DO all of this on your own land not just hiring some help with your timber harvesting as you did in the past on your mountain. PLUS if your neighbors help one another as they should do as GOOD neighbors and as a community effort to MAINTAIN safety and property preservation... ALL of you need to weigh the pros and cons in your final decision.

Best wishes to you, to your community and to everyone else on the forum.

Cate
 
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This years wildfires were, obviously pretty bad. Last year in these parts were bad too, with a fire very close to our place. And, most importantly, everything I read indicates it will only get worse in the Pacific Northwest and California. Some factors are not going to change, while others could, but there societal realities ensure they won't.

So, has this factor dramatically changed your preparedness plans? Life plans in general?

Thanks for sharing.
Country Gent,

You did not answer this question or OP of yours. Did you and your wife ever decide on your sunshine state?

Are you going to move or keep on waiting to move at the 'right time' when you and your wife figure it all out?

Trust me, there may never be a 'right time' especially as you age or if severe health issues come up in your life or with your spouse IF you keep putting it off.

I know people who have spoken about a big move and they are still talking about it 20 plus years on and off the internet. Off the internet as in friends of mine - some are still alive, of course, and some recently died.

One man and his wife and two other couples that I was extremely close to wanted to move to 2 places 'out west' and they spoke about it for their entire life. NOTHING held them back, they had the money, their kids were grown up, they did not have to physically/emotionally have to care for their elderly parents and some of their parents had already died. PLUS an elderly family member could MOVE too.

Do you see a change in your immediate family's future due to the 'fire seasons' that LAST for longer period of times and HIT close to home?

Cate
PS: We got a tiny bit of rain on and off, some smoke was not as severe and I could work in the garage for a bit on Sunday night. The smoke is due to come back INTO the valley midweek from what I am hearing/reading.

They had an arson fire (Pallets.) here in town. They have claimed it as arson. Other police reports on the radio.

Quote:

"The Missoula Rural Fire Department responded to a large fire that broke out in a traffic signal storage yard, located off of West Broadway near the Missoula International Airport."

"A fire fighter on scene said a pile of pallets was set on fire illegally."

^^^
This is under investigation just like all of the other ones in this state and elsewhere.

They never caught the arsonist/arsonists that started 27 fires on the one Crow Rez (MT) either.

I will not list the other PD and FD links and stories.
 
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Member, livn in the mobile home 'bout a quartr mile offen the Yellowstone, just below Yankee Jim canyon being rocked to sleep by the wind move'n the home side to side!
Between Livingston and Gardiner?

I have been in that area several times with my MT born and raised husband.

We still have friends in Livingston. Livingston is one of the highest wind areas in Montana. My husband used to have a Livingston wind meter email notification on his work computer.

Take care.

Cate
 
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If some of you had parents and mentors who lived through the 30's depression - you already should know how to prepare for all types of emergencies. Plus if you live in any part of the country that has storms year round - no power unless you create your own power in very rural areas, suburban, small town or cities... you should have a clue there too.

I will take ice and snow storms in blizzard country and hurricanes (Been there - done that with both and more.) over months on end TOXIC AIR, made worse with temp inversions year round, massive forest fires caused by lightning strikes, fallen and vandalized SAW CUT power poles, camp fires deliberately set and left burning with NO one camping - arsonists, criminal arsonists in and out of rural and city areas, idiots who do stupid things when it comes to starting fires, and living with .gov pea brains who do not have any common sense/brains or use sane forest management plans.

Crikey, OLD forest service workers and Forest Service Rangers (In charge of a huge FS district.), dead and alive ones, have repeatedly stated what was and still is WRONG with the new forest management policies. One of our closest, late friends was a top FS Ranger in ID and in MT. He started at the bottom and worked his way up. I think that he worked in CA as a young man too. The old, late friend used to use mules, pack train, and take them in with supplies for the FS firemen.

My MT born and raised husband has repeatedly told me point blank that the LAST 20 years have been the worst fire seasons that he has ever lived through in this college town, further up north (Yaak area right below Canada and close to the panhandle of Idaho.) and all across MT with the TOXIC AIR and tons more. People had to LEAVE their homes in this county due to the toxic air coming from ALL directions (Not just due to the fires close to their home.) and not just in the Seeley Lake area a couple of years ago. It was horrible and it lasted for a LONG time too.

Old Lady Cate
 

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