Forest Fire Fighting 101 Fire Camp Comes to Milo
Smoke covered the Milo Adventist Academy campus on a daily basis during late September and early October as winds and high temperatures fanned the flames of the Boze and Rainbow fires, 37 miles to the northeast of campus. For the second time this fire season, the U.S. Forest Service used Milo’s Camp Umpqua, near the main academy campus, as their base of operations for fighting the fires. At one point during the worst of the fire, there were nearly 700 personnel living at the camp.
The incident commander called the camp a “small city” with much work and planning needed to assure its operation and the safety of all involved.
Maureen Pearson, Milo volunteer, arranged for Milo students to take a field trip to see firsthand how a fire camp operates. They visited the command center, medical area, supplies, equipment, shower facilities and dining areas. Students learned about the many different jobs and responsibilities needed to operate a fire camp, including logistics, accident prevention and medical treatment, food preparation, public relations and information, accounting and payroll, weather forecasting and map making.
Milo students gained greatly from this unique opportunity to learn directly from real life challenges.