Pagami Fire report vindicates use of fire shelters - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Pagami Fire report vindicates use of fire shelters


DULUTH, Minn. (AP) -- A U.S. Forest Service report on last September's Pagami Creek fire in the Boundary Waters says six crew members made the right decision when they used their fire shelters to escape the blaze.

The Forest Service analyzes such serious incidents for what can be learned. The fire shelters are intended as a last resort and are risky. But Superior National Forest spokeswoman Kris Reichenbach tells the Duluth News Tribune it was exactly the right situation.

The report says communication could have been better between firefighters and officials managing the fire, and blamed incomplete information coming in. But it says Forest Service officials couldn't have known the fire would move as fast as it did.

It says fire officials may need to view the Pagami fire's speed as a new norm under drier, windier conditions.

Among other findings, the report said considering lakes as safe zones should be re-evaluated.

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