Real-time fire data system embraced by Forest Service

The system transforms wildlands into a "cyber world of information"


By Ryan Maye Handy
The Gazette

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — From its first hours, David Blankinship knew how many firefighters, aircraft and dollars were being used to fight the Waldo Canyon fire — and he watched it all unfold on his laptop in California.

The former Colorado Springs Fire Department employee has created a computer system that transforms wildland firefighting into a cyber world of information, where such things as fire costs and minute-by-minute infrared images can be viewed by crews on the line.

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