A Shasta-Trinity National Forest update on the Bagley Fire explains the three common phases of rehabilitation following wildfires on federal lands.
There are three common phases of rehabilitation following wildfires on federal lands: Fire Suppression Repair, Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER), and Long-term Recovery.
Some land managers also implement a Rapid Assessment Team (RAT) that builds upon activities and suggestions initiated by a BAER Team, according to a Bagley Fire Update from the Shasta-Trinity National Forest.
The Forest Service says currently on the Bagley Fire, fire crews and specialized heavy equipment such as road graders, excavators, chippers and backhoe tractors are being utilized to accomplish the task of suppression repair.
BAER Team members are also conducting their assessment of the burned area.
After 29 days at a cost of $34 million, the 46,011 acre Bagley Fire was declared 100 percent contained on Saturday, Sept. 15, 2012.
Containment, according to fire officials, is "the status of a wildfire suppression action signifying that a control line has been completed around the fire, and any associated spot fires, which can reasonably be expected to stop the fire's spread.
As described in the Forest Service update:
Fire Suppression Repair
Fire Suppression Repair is a series of immediate post-fire actions taken to repair damages and minimize environmental impacts resulting from fire suppression activities. This usually begins after the fire is contained and before the demobilization of an Incident Management Team.
This work rehabilitates the hand and dozer firelines, roads, trails, staging areas, safety zones, and drop points used during fire suppression efforts.
The Burned Area Emergency Response program is a rapid assessment of burned watersheds. The BAER Team identifies unacceptable post-fire threats and implements emergency treatments to reduce risks before the first major storm or damaging event. The fire results in a loss of vegetation, exposure of the soil to erosion, and increased water runoff that may lead to flooding and increased sediment and debris flows.
BAER treatments that may be implemented include installation of erosion and runoff water control devices, temporary barriers to protect recovering areas, public safety signs, and drainage features for increased flow.
BAER work may also include replacing resource protection structures such as gates, removing safety hazards such as snags, preventing permanent loss of habitat for threatened and endangered species, and preventing the spread of noxious weeds.
Long-Term Recovery utilizes non-emergency actions that are done within three years or more after fire containment. These actions are done to improve fire-damaged lands that are unlikely to recover naturally and to repair or replace facilities damaged by the fire. This phase may include restoring burned habitat, monitoring fire effects, replacing burned fences, timber removal, fuels reduction, interpreting cultural sites, treating pre-existing noxious weed infestations, and installing interpretive signs.
For more information
Bagley Fire Information Phone Number: (800) 923-7316