By Myrna Trauntvein
One concern about wildland fires Juab County does not
have is the destruction of summer cabins.
"It is a small issue in Juab County because we have,
probably, no more than 20 summer cabins in all the county,"
said Robert Steele, county commissioner.
Some county neighbors, like Sanpete, had a great many
and it was a concern for them, he said.
An e-mail had been received by Mike Seely, county
administrator, asking for commissioners to let the state
know what the concerns were about dealing with wildfires as
far as valuable real estate was concerned.
"It is important that we respond," said Steele, "but
summer cabins are a small concern here in comparison with
some of the other counties in the state."
Other types of property, such as ranch and range
lands, were of grave concern and could suffer great loss by
On May 10, 2005, a Governor's Executive Order was,
issued, entitled Wildland Fire Management, declaring a state
of emergency because of fire danger in the state of
It was issued because "the danger from wildland fires
is extremely high throughout the State of Utah."
Jon M. Huntsman, Jr., Governor declared a "State of
Emergency exists statewide due to the threat to public
safety, property, natural resources and the environment for
thirty days, effective as of May 10, 2005, requiring aid,
assistance and relief available pursuant to the provisions
of state statutes, and the State Emergency Operations Plan,
which is hereby activated."
Because of the wet spring, plant growth is high and
could pose a fire danger.
In partnership with the USDA Forest Service and the
Utah Division of Forestry, Fire, and State Lands, a
Geographic Information System (GIS) has been used to create
a wildland fire assessment methodology.
GIS layers include topography, infrastructure,
vegetation, climate, sensitive natural values, and fire
By using the environmental, human, and topographic
information, probability maps of wildland fire occurrence
were created. In both cases, high fire danger areas can be
overlaid with protection areas (natural or human-made value
areas) to identify critical fire danger areas.
"Our fire marshal was at the meeting," said Seely."He
obtained the necessary information for us."