New map gives near real-time information about active wildfires

Published: Aug. 3, 2022 at 3:51 AM MDT
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - A new map gives near real-time information about active wildfires in the western part of the United States.

The Western Fire Chiefs Association recently launched their new Fire Map, which combines data from the U.S. Forest Service with 911 call centers in the area of the fire, the first map of its kind to do so.

“We realized all the map systems that are present are really focused on giving lots of operational information to decision makers, like incident management teams, fire chiefs, responding firefighters. That kind of information is different than what a community member might want,” said retired fire chief in Santa Fe, New Mexico Erik Litzenberg. “Community members probably wants the basics.”

The map shows the estimated geographical layout of the fire, containment, acreage, growth in the last 24 hours, when the data was last updated, and how long it has been active for.

“If you are learning to live with fire, you’re going to have the information you need to make good decisions,” said Litzenberg. “This was designed so it could be used over cellular, primarily on a cell phone with limited service.”

There are currently no active wildfires in southern Colorado or elsewhere in the state. But, fire officials remind Coloradans we are no stranger to wildfires.

“I don’t have to tell you, you’re in C. Springs. You guys have seen it firsthand, it’s getting worse,” said Litzenberg. “In Colorado Springs by the way ... all levels of government really work together in a really solid way.”

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