Volunteers reduce fire danger on High Drive Bluff

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by BREANNA ROY

KREM.com

Posted on October 15, 2012 at 5:56 PM

Updated Saturday, Nov 9 at 4:38 PM

SPOKANE – The Inland Northwest received a smattering of rain over the weekend, but it wasn’t enough to wash away fire danger. With high winds in the forecast and plenty of dry fuel on the ground, fire experts warn we still have potential for new sparks.

A citizen group decided to take the threat into their own hands on High Drive Bluff. Friends of the Bluff spent months pruning pine branches and clearing acres of fuels on the bluff. This past weekend, their work culminated with a major effort: hauling all the branches up to High Drive.

Friends of the Bluff volunteer organizer John Schram said the bluff has the potential to catch fire every five to seven years.

“From what I’ve been told, there’s always a fire danger,” Schram said. “When you get too many dead trees, branches, things like that, it just really kicks it up a notch.”

Nearly 70 volunteers spent their Saturday helping the Friends of the Bluff effort and now city workers will chip the branches and wood to use in other city projects.

“I believe this pile may take them a few days to go through,” Schram said.

The tremendous turnout and citizen interest in the bluff earned them a $50,000 grant to improve an additional 50 acres of the bluff.

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