The Three Phases of Wildfire Rehabilitation
Incident: Thompson Ridge Post-Fire Response Burned Area Emergency Response
THREE PHASES OF WILDFIRE REHABILITATION
There are three phases of rehabilitation following wildfires on federal lands:
o Fire Suppression Repair
o Emergency Stabilization-Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER)
o Long-Term Recovery and Restoration
Fire Suppression Repair is a series of immediate post-fire actions taken to repair damages and minimize potential soil erosion and impacts resulting from fire suppression activities and usually begins before the fire is contained, and before the demobilization of an Incident Management Team. This work repairs the hand and dozer fire lines, roads, trails, staging areas, safety zones, and drop points used during fire suppression efforts.
Emergency Stabilization-Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) is a rapid assessment of burned watersheds by a BAER team to identify and reduce unacceptable post-fire threats, and implement emergency stabilization actions before the first major storms. 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 actions such as: the installation of erosion and run-off water control devices; temporary barriers to protect recovering areas; and warning signs may be implemented. BAER work may also replace safety related facilities; remove safety hazards; prevent permanent loss of habitat for threatened and endangered species; and prevent the spread of noxious weeds.
Long-Term Recovery and Restoration utilizes non-emergency actions that are done within three years or more after fire containment to improve fire-damaged lands that are unlikely to recover naturally and to repair or replace facilities damaged by the fire that are not critical to life and safety. This phase may include restoring burned habitat, reforestation, other planting or seeding, monitoring fire effects, replacing burned fences, interpreting cultural sites, treating noxious weed infestations, and installing interpretive signs.