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                  US Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station
                                               MAY 18, 2009
                                                                                                    Research &

Page-                      Research Soil Scientist Deborah Page-Dumroese, Moscow, was invited to speak at
                   the Montana Bioenergy Workshop, held May 10-11 in Missoula, Montana to determine the
Dumroese           best ways to encourage development of bioenergy. More than 100 public policy,
Invited to         environmental, research, industry, and rural development representatives attended. Deborah
                   participated on a Forest Biomass panel and gave a talk titled “Soil Impacts and BMP’s for
Speak at           Intensive Biomass Harvests.”
Bioenergy                  The event was co-sponsored by the Western Governor’s Association, Governor’s
                   Office of Economic Development, Montana Department of Commerce, Montana
Workshop           Department of Environmental Quality, and Montana Department of Natural Resources and

                                                                         Research Ecologist and National
RMRS                                                            Grassland Council member Paulette Ford
Represented at                                                  (photo), Albuquerque, along with Biological
                                                                Science Technician Tom Juntii and Supervisory
National                                                        Ecologist Jack Butler from Rapid City,
Grasslands                                                      represented RMRS at the National Grasslands
                                                                Managers meeting in Rapid City, South Dakota,
Meeting                                                         May 11-14. Attending from the WO were
                                                                Director of Rangeland Management Janette
                                                                Kaiser and Deputy Director Ralph Giffen,
                   former RMRS employee Dan Uresk, WO detached, and Deputy Director of the Watershed,
                   Fish, Wildlife, Air and Rare Plants program Steve Segovia.
                           The meeting was hosted by the Buffalo Gap National Grassland and the Nebraska
                   National Forests and Grasslands, and themed “Envision the Visitor’s Experience… Through
                   Partnerships.” Highlights of the trip included a visit to the National Grasslands Visitor
                   Center in Wall, South Dakota, and a tour of the Badlands National Park. Next year’s
                   meeting will be held at the Black Kettle National Grassland in Oklahoma.

Station Science            Several RMRS employees presented at the recent 10th Wildland Fire Safety Summit,
                   held in Phoenix, Arizona. The event, organized by the International Association of Wildland
Presented at       Fire (IAWF) and the National Wildfire Coordinating Group’s (NWCG) Safety & Health
Wildland Fire      Working Team, focused on the effects of organizational culture, leadership, psychology, and
                   human physiology on public and firefighter safety.
Safety Summit              RMRS Human Factors and Risk Management RD&A staff and collaborators
                   contributed the following talks: “Evaluating Safe Performance,” by Program Manager
                   James Saveland, Fort Collins; “High Reliability Organizing in the Wildland Fire
                   Community,” by Social Scientist Anne Black, Missoula; and “To What Extent Does the
                   Federal Wildland Fire Community Function as a Learning Organization?” by Wilderness
                   Specialist Vita Wright, Missoula. Research Mechanical Engineer Bret Butler, Missoula,
                   presented “Common Factors Associated with the Formation of Large Fire Whirls,” and
                   “Recent Research Findings Relative to Safety Zone Size and Location in Complex Terrain.”
                   Summit participants included fire managers and researchers from Australia, Canada, Greece,
                   and the United States.
                          Field Guide for Identifying Fuel Loading Models, General Technical Report
Hot Off the       RMRS-GTR-225, by Pamela G. Sikkink, Duncan C. Lutes, and Robert E. Keane.
Press                     This report details a procedure for identifying fuel loading models (FLMs) in the
                  field. FLMs are a new classification system for predicting fire effects from on-site fuels.
                  Each FLM class represents fuel beds that have similar fuel loadings and produce similar
                  emissions and soil surface heating when burned using computer simulations. The authors
                  describe how to estimate fuel load in the field, match the load estimates to an appropriate
                  FLM, and use the FLMs to predict the smoke or soil heating that could result from burning
                  those loads. The FLM names can also be used as fuel descriptors in other applications,
                  including inputs into fire models for predicting fire effects, data layers for mapping fuel
                  conditions, and supplements to vegetation data for more complete environmental
                  descriptions to use in restoration or wildlife habitat planning. Copies are available from
                  RMRS Publications Distribution (970498-1392) or on the RMRS web at

Take Honorable
Mention in
Photo Contest

                          Last fall, Research Ecologist/Geneticist Michael Schwartz, Missoula, and Forestry
                  Technician Vilius Zukauskas, Gunnison, Colorado, submitted photos for consideration in
                  the 2008 Kids in the Woods Photo Contest. One of the three photos Michael entered,
                  “Investigating Invertebrates,” (left photo) won honorable mention in the “Caring” category,
                  and one of the four photos Vilius submitted, “Girl on a Mountain Top,” (right photo) won
                  honorable mention in the “Nature – Loving It” category. Over 750 photos were submitted
                  for judging.

                           The Joint Fire Science Program (JFSP) is soliciting start-up proposals to support
JFSP Soliciting   regional consortia of fire science providers and managers to enhance fire science delivery
Proposals         and adoption. The JFSP hopes to develop a national network of regional consortia, each
                  operating as a willing and formal association working together to enhance fire science
                  delivery and adoption within a specified geographic region. The intent of the current
                  solicitation is to support initial planning and an assessment of management needs for
                  selected consortia. For consortia funded under this solicitation, the desired outcome is a full
                  proposal for a two-year operating period.
                           Proposals submitted in response to the current solicitation must include information
                  regarding a statement of need, geographic region, consortium partners, end-user
                  communities, existing science delivery partnerships, end-user interactions, intended focus,
                  program effectiveness, and budget. Proposals should also describe how end-user
                  communities will be engaged to determine their information needs and priorities.
                           For more information, contact John Cissel, Program Manager Analyst, Joint Fire
                  Science Program, 208-387-5349, John_Cissel@nifc.blm.gov. Deadline is July 10, 2009.
                           If you suffer an injury on the job, notify your supervisor or local safety contact
If You Get Hurt   immediately. If you need emergency medical attention, first, of course, call 911 or have
on the Job…       someone call for you. If medical care is needed, the injured employee, supervisor, or other
                  responsible party should call the Albuquerque Service Center (ASC) at 877-372-7248, press
                  “2” for HCM, then press “5” for Workers Compensation (WC). Advise the Contact Center
                  representative this is a request for authorizing medical treatment and you need to speak with
                  someone in WC. If you are injured after hours or on the weekend, call the ASC-Workers
                  Compensation cell number at 505-280-7691. Enter these numbers into your cell phone so
                  you have them available in an emergency!
                           Following a near miss, injury or motor vehicle accident (MVA), you will need to
                  access the FS Safety and Health Information Portal System (SHIPS) via ConnectHR
                  (https://connecthrauth.gdcii.com) to complete the necessary forms; this can be done from
                  any computer. Once in ConnectHR, click on “SHIPS Add Incident” to begin. In the event
                  you are unable to access the Internet, contact your supervisor and/or local safety contact for
                  help. Be sure to enter your supervisor’s email correctly when prompted, as SHIPS will
                  notify your supervisor electronically instructing them to access SHIPS (same as above) to
                  finalize the forms and begin the accident analysis. Upon completion, print, sign, and fax the
                  injury forms to ASC at 866-339-8583, and give MVA related forms (SF-91) to your local
                  fleet manager. After faxing injury or illness forms, submit hard copies to: USDA Forest
                  Service, Human Capital Management, Mail Stop 118-WC, 3900 Masthead St., NE,
                  Albuquerque, NM 87109
                           Injury and near miss reporting does take some time, but you and your coworkers
                  ultimately reap the benefits. Besides allowing others to learn from incidents and providing
                  the Station with a well-rounded view of the real hazards you face, expediently reporting near
                  misses and injuries helps ensure that you receive the necessary medical treatment now and
                  provides documentation if something develops later. If you have questions, contact Acting
                  Station Safety and Occupational Health Manager Devon Donahue at 801-625-5541.

                           Thanks to all the RMRS employees who participated in the Earth Day Carbon Saver
Carbon Saver      Contest. Over the 22 work days in April, you avoided putting 20,439 lbs or 9.3 tons of
                  carbon into the atmosphere. 1 This translates into about 1,043 gallons of gas saved. One
Contest Results   hundred and ten employees from over half of our labs participated in the contest—what a
                  fantastic turnout! If you have any questions about the results please contact Jennifer Hayes
                  at 970-498-1349.

                  Labs with most participation overall:
                         1) Ogden Service Center—75% of employees participated
                         2) ALWRI—67% of employees participated
                         3) Moscow—61% of employees participated

                  Labs with the most points (average per person participating):
                         1) Ogden Forestry Sciences Lab—average 56 points per person
                         2) Moscow—average 52 points per person
                         3) ALWRI—average 44 points per person

                  Individuals with the most points (all earned 110 points):
                          1) James Donley–Moscow
                          2) Nick Crookston –Moscow
                          3) Jeff Kaiden—Missoula Forest Sciences Lab
                       Longest Bike Commute:
                              1) Nicolas Day (Ogden Service Center)—31 miles

                       Fun Facts about participants:
                              1) Average commute: 13 miles
                              2) Normal way of commuting:
                                       A) Walk/Bike—27%
                                       B) Bus—9%
                                       C) Car—45%
                                       D) Carpool—7%
                                       E) Varies— 10%
                                       F) Telecommute—1%
                         Only counts employees who drive, carpool or varies; does not include bike, walk, bus or
                       telecommute. Assumes: 25mpg for vehicles; 19.6 lbs CO2 per gallon of gas

                               Skin cancer, caused by too much sun, is the most common of all cancers in the
Don’t Fry Day          United States. More people will be diagnosed with skin cancer this year than breast, prostate,
                       lung, and colon cancer combined.
                               The Friday before Memorial Day is designated as “Don’t Fry Day,” and 2009 as the
                       “Year of the Hat.” While millions of Americans will enjoy the great outdoors this holiday
                       weekend, the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention reminds you to enjoy the
                       outdoors safely.

                       What You Can Do to Be Safe in the Sun:
                       ► Do Not Burn: Overexposure to the sun is the most preventable risk factor for skin
                       ► Avoid Sun Tanning and Tanning Beds: Ultraviolet (UV) light from tanning beds and
                       the sun causes skin cancer and wrinkling. If you want to look like you’ve been in the sun,
                       use a sunless self-tanning product instead.
                       ► Cover Up: Wear protective clothing, such as a long-sleeved shirt, pants, a wide-brimmed
                       hat, and sunglasses when possible.
                       ► Seek Shade/Use Umbrellas: Remember that the sun’s UV rays are strongest between 10
                       a.m. and 4 p.m.
                       ► Generously Apply Sunscreen: Generously apply sunscreen to all exposed skin using a
                       Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of at least 15 that provides broad-spectrum protection from both
                       UVA and UVB rays. Reapply every two hours, even on cloudy days, and after swimming or
                       ► Use Extra Caution Near Water, Snow and Sand: Water, snow and sand reflect the
                       damaging rays of the sun, which can increase your chance of sunburn.
                       ► Check the UV Index: The UV Index provides important information to help you plan
                       your outdoor activities in ways that prevent overexposure to the sun. Developed by the
                       National Weather Service (NWS) and EPA, you can find the UV Index for your area online
                       at: www.epa.gov/sunwise/uvindex.html. .
                       ► Get Vitamin D Safely: Get vitamin D safely through a diet that includes vitamin
                       supplements and foods fortified with vitamin D.

        The Explorer is a weekly employee newsletter of the US Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station.
                                Editor: Rick Fletcher, 970-498-1372, rfletcher@fs.fed.us.

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