Summarizing the wildfire season in the Northwest

Pacific Northwest Fire Siege 2014 from Andy Lyon on Vimeo.

This video that summarizes the 2014 wildfire season in Washington and Oregon is shockingly professionally filmed and produced, considering it was apparently commisioned by government agencies. It was created by Andy Lyon, a Colorado resident whose bio states that in addition to film making he “also works as a Public Information Officer on big wildfires”. It is broadcast-quality, and I would be surprised if TV stations or networks don’t pick it up.

News organizations record millions of minutes of footage every year of fires, usually concentrating on big flames and air drops. But generally they barely scratch the surface of what is actually happening, and rarely, like this piece, look behind the scenes or at the big picture through dozens of interviews with fire professionals.

There is not a lot of on the ground footage shadowing firefighters — the film steps back a little and looks at the entirety of the fire season. However, there are some excellent examples of great still and video photography.

This video reminds me of an excellent film that the National Park Service produced in 2012 about their prescribed fire program in Everglades National Park, titled “River of Fire” by producer/director/editor Jennifer Brown. Managers should commission quality film making like this more often — it can result in more public understanding and support for what they do.

Be sure and notice the air drop at 12:00. It appears that an MD-87 air tanker, previously unseen, climbs out of a canyon at a steep angle while making a visually impressive drop.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

One thought on “Summarizing the wildfire season in the Northwest”

  1. It takes a lot of time and work to produce a video like this. Well done, informative and balanced. Very interesting weather events leading into what would become “one” to remember. Very dry (2013) mudslide (s), lack of adequate spring rains, back to dry hot windy weather, and of course lightning. 12:00 (time clip) I thought NASA retired the space shuttle.


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