Incident managers from Indonesia visit the Rough Fire

Indonesia Command System
Incident management system trainers from Indonesia visit the Rough Fire in California. Inciweb photo.

This article first appeared on the InciWeb page for the Rough Fire, which has burned 66,542 acres near Hume Lake in southern California. Fire managers are calling it 25 percent contained.


“Indonesia, which is comprised of a group of 17,500 islands, is considered one of the most disaster prone areas in the world. Not do the mountains move (147 active volcanos), but the ground around the mountains seems to shake with earthquakes daily, reportedly with at least a 5.0 tremor every day. On December 26, 2004 Indonesia recorded the third largest earthquake ever recorded with the longest duration of faulting ever observed. It caused the entire planet to vibrate as much as 1 centimeter and triggered other earthquakes as far away as Alaska.

Shortly after the 2004 earthquake, the government realized that the country needed a system to help manage disasters. The government approached the United States to teach and provide technical expertise on the Incident Command System (ICS) for the tsunami-prone areas. A series of training courses was conducted in partnership with the governments of Sri Lanka and Indonesia.

18 individuals from Indonesia who are considered trainers arrived at the Rough Fire on August 28. They will be traveling to big cities in California to learn and participate in certain aspects of the ICS over the next few weeks. They expected that by arriving in the month of August they would have the opportunity to see the ICS at work during a large incident.

“The Team” will be at the Rough Base Camp to observe certain sections of the command system, so they can pass along their knowledge and educate the other Indonesians about ICS. On one particular Island, the team stated they have over five thousand trained volunteers. Many islands in Indonesia are difficult to access, similar to The Rough Fire. The team has changed the name of the management system to “Indonesian Command System”.”


Installing a hose lay on the Rough Fire. Undated InciWeb photo. (We think this is not the group from Indonesia.)
Installing a hose lay on the Rough Fire. Undated InciWeb photo. (We think this is not the group from Indonesia.)

Thanks and a tip of the hat go out to Barbara.

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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.

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