Every Day Above and Beyond: The Delaware State ForestJune 25, 2017
A lot of us think of wildfires as being an unwelcome and dangerous western phenomenon. Unfortunately, however, we are just as susceptible to them here in Pennsylvania and the signs you see reminding visitors of “high fire danger” at the entrance to your state park or forest isn’t a joke. Imagine a forest blaze that burned and spread for 15 days on the Pike-Monroe county line when two fires merged, scorching almost 9,000 acres and threatening more than 250 homes and businesses. Two leased cabins, three seasonal homes, and six outbuildings were lost in the end to a fire fighting exercise that was complicated by rugged terrain, windy, dry weather, and dead trees left by former gypsy moth infestations. In an average year, the Bureau of Forestry fights 400 to 800 wildfires. There have been 400 already in 2017. So, what if vacancies in parks and forests are left unfilled, as will be expected under the current budget proposal?