Donations for those fighting the Squirrel Creek Fire:
Alright folks! I just returned from Big Laramie Valley Station 1, and they have some requests. As I’m sure folks are well aware, this is going to be an ongoing effort. Now that they’ve taken stock, here’s the list. Individually packaged snack stuff is preferred, but they’ll bag it up too:
Peanuts & other nuts
Cliff bars, or other high protein bars
Beef jerky and/or Slim Jims
Hand wipes/moist towelettes
Trial size toiletries and sunscreens
Large First Aid box for Wycolo Station 4
And in response to a question I received, yes, you can donate beer if you wish. I’ll be making a run up to the station from Laramie at 6:30 PM. If you’d like to leave supplies with me, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to make arrangements! Cross-posted here.
block their frakking calls until the paperwork goes through, is what I say
They’re on to that. I have seven numbers saved under the name “Sallie Mae” — they’ll just call with a new extension or from a new call center. Right now, I customize the ringtone to “silent” so it logs when they call. There’s several active suits against Sallie Mae right now for this kind of behavior. It’s collecting evidence as far as I’m concerned.
“We’re moving 7,000 bottles of water a day donated by this community to the fire lines. To the firefighters fighting this fire. That’s swimming pools full!”—
Spencer Pollock of the Red Cross at the Centennial School briefing tonight on community efforts to support those battling the Squirrel Creek Fire.
To the gentleman who wrote in to ask if this kind of response makes me believe in God: No, it doesn’t.
It makes me believe in my fellow Laramigos, the people of Albany County, the volunteer firefighters, and the local, state, and federal crews who’ve all come together to support them. Some of them might be driven by a belief in God, and that’s cool and all, but we’ve all come together because of our belief in our community and doing the right thing.
But this is my boomstick! Gun owners and fire prevention intersect
I’m hearing complaints from people regarding possible limits on shooting in open areas because some fires may have been started by those shooting off ranges. Chairman of the Utah Sports Shooting Council Clark Aposhian said that perhaps 5 percent of the wildfires in the state have been caused by target shooters this year, and “I don’t know how much of a problem it really is.”
"A Mesa man is facing six months in prison and a $5,000 fine for his role in starting the Sunflower Fire which charred nearly 18,000 acres of Arizona land.
Authorities said Steven Craig Shiflet, 23, from Mesa, and four of his friends were in the Sycamore Creek area for a campout and bachelor party on May 11, 2012.
The group had been shooting at targets when Shiflet loaded a shell into his shotgun and fired it. Shortly after Shiflet fired the shot, smoke appeared in the brush just behind where the shot was fired. The men told police, despite their best attempts, they were unable to extinguish the fire.”
"Among the recent fires, target shooters on June 21 ignited a blaze south of Salt Lake City that forced the evacuation of about 2,300 before it was contained."
2. Your right to bear arms ends where my property rights and personal safety begin. Find an outdoor shooting range instead of the brush. No one is telling you that you can’t have guns. We’re saying you can’t use those guns in certain areas, at certain times, for the safety of other people. Are these target shooters really so selfish that they cannot limit themselves out of personal responsibility? I thought the right to bear arms was about protecting one’s self and others, not about risking burning down their homes because gun rights mean getting to shoot whenever and wherever.
Take some personal responsibility and shoot in designated areas, and obey fire restrictions — basically, quit bitching restrictions infringe on Second Amendment rights. They don’t. It’s a temporary restriction while the West is a tinderbox waiting to explode.
I’ll likely resume more political blogging soon. But as you’ve likely guessed, as someone pretty involved in the Laramie community, people have been asking me for help, information, news, etc. This is a great place to collate that info.
So thanks for sticking around folks, and thank you for your notes of concern. We’ve got a marvelous group of people helping to make this less of an emergency and I’m thrilled to lend a hand. I’ll also be thrilled to not post another word about the Squirrel Creek Fire ever again. Let’s hope that happens soon.
Help those affected by the Squirrel Creek Fire in Wyoming
Here’s how you can help:
Help Community Members
There’s a community group called “Squirrel Creek Wish List” for those who’ve been evacuated and those who wish to help. Find it on Facebook here. The Red Cross is also coordinating volunteer efforts and supplies. More information on that below.
Help the Firefighters
I talked to the crew at the Big Laramie Valley Station tonight to see what they could use. Another team of firefighters (Type 2 Incident Team) will be staying overnight at the Wycolo Fire Station, likely starting tomorrow. They’re in need of one to two dozen cots and/or sleeping bags, pillows, blankets, and sheets for those staying overnight to battle the blaze.
The fire crew also needs the following:
Other prepackaged snacks
Other things typically needed are lip balm, over-the-calf cotton socks, cotton t-shirts, baby powder, deodorant and other toiletries, and towels
Update 8:41 AM MST:
Items also needed by the firefighters:
Update 3:41 PM MST:
Fire crews need the following:
Men’s and women’s deodorant
Snack size Ziploc bags
Blue ink pens (MUST BE BLUE)
Windshield markers (white in color)
Donations to the fire crew can be taken to the Big Laramie Valley Station 1 at 2004 Highway 230. The road is closed just a few miles past the fire station, meaning the Wycolo Station is not accessible to citizens. If you’re unable to get supplies to either place, message me here or email me at email@example.com. Taking them to the Big Laramie Valley Station or the Albany County Fire Station.
My pal, Kathleen Vernon-Kubichek, also wrote that anyone can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org because she’ll be taking supplies to station 1 on Highway 230 with her truck. She’s already been up once this morning and updated me with what people need. So you can contact her as well.
Get Volunteer Information
There will be a briefing by the Red Cross at the Albany County Fairgrounds (out on south Hwy 287) tomorrow at 10 AM. This is an excellent time to find out if supplies and/or volunteers are needed.
To volunteer, go to the Albany County Fairgrounds to speak with Red Cross Personnel. They’re conducting trainings today and (I hear) tomorrow.
Finally, stay up to date on the fires and community response here on Cognitive Dissonance, get the official scoop from the Albany County Sheriff’s Office here, and get word on the progress made on the Squirrel Creek fire on InciWeb. Evacuation information can be found at both places. If you have any questions, call non-emergency dispatch at 307-721-2526. Keep in mind, there’s always rumors floating about. Though dispatch is getting slammed, it’s better to call and check before posting an area is being evacuated when it’s not online — especially areas in the city limits. That makes people panic. Currently, the fire is roughly 20-25 miles from Laramie. Here’s a map with the evacuation area marked.
To receive evacuation information, sign up for the emergency notification system CodeRED. Any pre-evacuation or evacuation notices are delivered though this system and the Sheriff’s Office website linked above. CodeRED will automatically call your phone if evacuations are ordered, and you can also elect to receive text alerts. The current evacuation point is the Albany County Fairgrounds.