The Gatlinburg Firestorm - Can it Happen Here?

Greg Byrd & Bruce Miller

April 19
10:59am - 12:00pm
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The Gatlinburg Firestorm has been called a "perfect storm," but will similar events occur in East Tennessee soon? Could it happen here on the Oak Ridge Reservation? What can homeowners do to reduce the risk of devastating loss of property or life to wildfire? What is the difference between prescribed fires and wildfires? How do we use prescribed fires on the Oak Ridge Reservation to reduce wildfire risk, while also helping native plants and wildlife thrive?

Bruce Miller is a veteran wildland fire specialist with the Tennessee Division of Forestry with 34 years experience in fire suppression, structure protection, and incident command. He was among the early responders as the Chimney Top 2 Fire of November 23-28, 2016, overran the city during high winds, and he will share his observations of the event and discuss principles of the Firewise Program.

Greg Byrd is program manager for Forest Stewardship and Wildland Fire Management Programs for the ORNL Natural Resources Program with over 25 years of service as a forester on the 33,000-acre DOE Oak Ridge Reservation. Chief among his projects are the publication wildland fire pre-planning documents and monitoring both fire use and wildfire occurrence on the reservation. He will provide a description of the reservation, its forest, and fire history.

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