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Firefighters praise use of air foam


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POSTED: Thursday, May 07, 2009
                       
This story has been corrected.  See below.

Compressed air foam is Honolulu firefighters' new tool to quickly put out fires.

               

     

 

OAHU BRUSH FIRES

       

       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
2001596
2002599
2003970
2004563
2005982
2006613
2007664
2008403
2009130

       

        (as of April 30)

        Source: HFD 

Seven new fire trucks equipped with the foam were added to the Honolulu Fire Department fleet in mid-March, just in time for the dry season when brush fires break out.

Thick, white foam adheres to surfaces and absorbs heat quicker than water alone, enabling firefighters to control and confine fires at a much faster rate, spokesman Capt. Terry Seelig said at a demonstration yesterday at the Charles H. Thurston Fire Training Center.

The foam system increases safety and helps reduce runoff and water damage to structures.

“;If we limit water use, we won't have consequential damage,”; said Seelig, adding that they hope to acquire additional fire trucks with the compressed air foam system.

Each truck costs about $600,000. Foam-equipped trucks are stationed at the Nanakuli, Kapolei, Wahiawa, McCully, Central, Mokulele and Olomana stations. Firefighters from the McCully Fire Station used foam to help extinguish a Hawaii Kai house fire yesterday.

;[Preview]  Fire Officials Warns Public About Wildfires
 

The recent muggy weather has fire officials educating the public on how to prevent wildfires.

[Watch]

 

Hydrologist Kevin Kodama of the National Weather Service said several locations in leeward, central and south Oahu received less than half of the normal rainfall last month. The lack of rain possibly contributed to a spike in brush fires to 50 last month, from 28 in March.

The dry, summer season typically starts in May through September.

Maj. Michael Moses of District 8 (Ewa, Kapolei and Waianae) said the number of brush fires on the Leeward Coast dropped from more than 300 in 2007 to 177 last year. Public awareness, collaboration among city, state and federal agencies and laws targeting arsonists contributed to the decline, Moses said.

“;They understand that a lot of these fires are being maliciously set,”; he said of residents who contact law enforcement officials to report suspicious activity. “;They want these things to stop.”;

 

 

               

     

 

CORRECTION

       

Saturday, May 30, 2009

       

Oahu saw 50 brush fires last month, up from 28 in March. This story originally reported there were 28 brush fires in March 2008.