Fire Stories

Fire stories from the national parks highlight events, incidents, and the like, associated with fire and fuels management, as well as fire education, technology, partnerships, and more. Stories highlight work related to Department of the Interior initiatives as well as local and regional initiatives.

Fire Education Specialist, Scott Isaacson, shows protective clothing worn by firefighters.

New Junior Firefighter Program a Success at Lava Beds

Lava Beds National Monument, California

Lava Beds National Monument is offering a new educational and fun program for visitors this summer. The Junior Firefighter program was launched Saturday, May 27, 2006. This first program ran a little over an hour. The Lava Beds Fire Crew worked with 25 participants near the new Visitor Center. In spite of the previous day snowfall the first program was well attended.

Children were able to try out using a fire hose, try on firefighter clothing and equipment, and check out a wildland fire engine during the Junior Firefighter Program at Lava Beds National Monument.

The Junior Firefighter program is designed for children between the ages of 7 and 12. This first program featured the monument's Fire Education Specialist and the fire crew with their engine. Participants discovered wildland fire's role in maintaining healthy ecosystems in the Monument. They also learned how firefighters manage fire to protect property and lives. They learned what it takes to put out wildland fires and discovered why some fires benefit the monument.

Superintendent Craig Dorman said "The kids enjoyed going on the fire engine and using the equipment to squirt water at specific targets. This program is designed to educate children about fire prevention, fire safety and the natural role fire plays in the monument's ecosystem," he added.

All of the kids received a Junior Firefighter card with several questions which they completed during and after the program. After the kids completed their cards and turned them in to the fire crew, they were awarded a National Park Service Junior Firefighter Patch.

Throughout the summer kids can also become Junior Firefighters anytime by hiking up to Schonchin Butte and participating in the program with the Schonchin Butte Fire Lookout.

Contact: Scott Isaacson, Fire Communication & Education Specialist
Phone: (530) 595-6163