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如何对抗山火

How Fighting Wildfires Works

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8月中旬早晨4点钟 在加利福尼亚北部的一片荒地上
It’s 4 am on a mid-August morning in the northern California wilderness.
经过一夜的风暴
During a brief overnight storm,
闪电袭击了山顶
lightning strikes the top of a hill
点燃了干燥的矮树丛 引发了一场野火
ignites some dry underbrush and starts a wildfire
直到上午六点太阳升起时
It isn’t until 6am as the sun rises
才有人发现火灾
that someone notices the fire
一个在山顶露营的徒步旅行者发现了这次火灾
a hiker camping on an overlooking Hill
紧急分发中心一接到这个旅行者的911电话后
as soon as the hiker’s 911 call is received by the dispatch center
他们联系加利福尼亚火灾中心
they contact Cal Fire
加利福尼亚火灾中心负责火灾防护和控制
the agency responsible for wildfire protection and management in California.
在6:30之前 他们呼叫加利福尼亚雷丁基地的空降森林消防灭火员
By 6:30, they call the Redding, California based smokejumpers.
他们是美国最精锐的灭火小队之一
They are one of most elite firefighting squads in the United States.
在美国只有400个空降森林消防灭火员
There are only 400 smokejumpers in the US
其中的40个在加利福尼亚 雷丁小镇
and 40 of those are based here in Redding, California.
灭火小队必须对野火做出快速应对
They’re essentially the rapid response team for wildfires.
在接到电话十五分钟之内
Within 15 minutes of receiving the call,
这些空降森林灭火员就要坐上飞机出发
these smokejumpers are in their plane and taking off.
飞机只用了20分钟就飞越了50英里到达火宅地点
It takes just 20 minutes to fly the 50 miles to the fire site
在附近找到了适合降落的空旷地
where they find a suitable tree-free landing spot,
紧接着灭火员跳机 展开降落伞 着陆
jump, deploy their parachutes, and land.
然后飞机回去投放成箱的装备
The plane then circles back to parachute down boxes of equipment.
森林空降灭火员至少要携带能供给72小时的物资
Smokejumpers carry with them enough supplies to last 72 hours completely self supported
食物 水 帐篷 安全装置和灭火工具
food, water, shelter, safety equipment, and firefighting tools.
他们要沿着山嵴线开辟出一条到达火灾现场的路
They follow the ridge line and make their way to the fire. Now,
现在这个小队伍
this is a small team and
需要决定哪些事情优先去做
they need to decide how to prioritize what they do.
随着火势已经扩大到十五英亩
the fire already have grown 15 acres
他们意识到单靠自己的力量灭火已经不太可能了
the team knows they’re unlikely to stop it on their own,
增援队伍正在途中
backups are already on the way,
所以他们首先要尽可能地减慢火势蔓延的速度
so their priority is to slow it down as much as possible.
有四个主要因素影响火势蔓延的快慢
There are four major factors that affect how fast a fire moves:
可燃物的数量 可燃物的湿度
how much fuel there is, how wet the fuel is,
风向以及山的倾斜度
the wind direction, and the slope.
灭火小队可以立即测量
The two factors that the team can immediately gauge
其中两个影响火势移动的因素
that affect where the fire will move
即风向和山的倾斜度
the fastest are the wind direction and slope.
这时风正从北方刮来
In this case the wind is coming from the north
并且他们知道西南方是一个上坡
and they know that to the south-west is an upward slope.
火势在上坡比在下坡蔓延的快
Fire moves faster uphill than it does downhill
因为火势会朝上坡蔓延 所以这些森林灭火员
since fire burns upwards so these smokejumpers
知道这个位置是火势很可能蔓延的方向
know that this is likely the fire’s fastest moving front.
当树木燃烧
While trees do burn,
火势蔓延时首要的燃料资源是堆在森林底层
the primary source of fuel that a wildfire uses to move is the dry
干燥的灌木和枯萎的木枝
brush and dead wood on the forest floor
所以停止森林火灾最常用的技巧
so the biggest technique used to stop forest fire
是做出一个防火隔离带
is to create what’s called a fire line.
本质上就是一道移除了所有可燃物的沟
These are essentially a gap where they remove all fuel
无论植物是活还是死都要被清除
plants both dead and alive
只有这样才能保证火势不继续蔓延
so that there’s nothing for the fire to continue burning.
空降森林灭火员们用一种混合链锯
the smokejumpers use a mix of chainsaws
和一些手工工具制造防火隔离带
and other hand tools to do this work
但有时防火隔离带是提前建立好的
but sometimes fire lines are pre-built
在这里的山顶有一条路
in this case there’s a road at the top of the uphill section
会帮助减慢或者停止火势蔓延
which will help slow or stop the fire
这样他们就可以处理其他地方了
so they can direct their efforts elsewhere
他们以这条路为锚点
They use the road as their anchor point
一块火势不太可能蔓延到的干净地区
a cleared section that the fire likely won’t cross where
接着在那块地上建立防火隔离带
where they start building their fire line
火势就会因防火隔离带而无法继续蔓延
so the fire can’t outflank them.
在制造防火隔离带过程中
Throughout this construction process
空降森林灭火员需要确保他们在
the smokejumpers need to be sure that they can escape in case
风向转变或者火速增长时能够安全逃离
the winds shift or the fire picks up speed.
野火在森林蔓延时 火速能达到7英里每小时
wildfires can move exceptionally fast up to seven miles per hour in forest
这速度比人们在浓密森林中穿行的速度快多了
which is faster than humans are often able to make their way through dense trees.
在草地上的火速更是可达到14英里每小时
in grasslands fires can move up to 14 miles per hour
所以灭火员必须格外小心
so firefighters have to be extra cautious.
因此灭火员很少直接站在火势蔓延的正前方
For this reason firefighters rarely put themselves directly in front of the fire’s moving front
他们会远离火势或是在火势旁边
they are either be far ahead or to the side.
在这种火灾情况下
In the case of this fire
灭火员在建第一条隔火带时
as they’re building this first fire line
要靠近一条容易撤退的道路作为撤退点
they’re close to a road which acts as an easy exit point
但是以防万一 所有的灭火员都要携带防火屏
but just in case all smoke jumpers carry fire shelters
虽然轻便小型的防火屏无法抵挡火焰太长时间
These compact, lightweight shelters won’t survive direct flames for too long
但是在灭火员无法从救火途中逃离时
but they do greatly increase a firefighter’s chance of survival
防火屏能大大增加灭火员们幸存的机会
in case they can’t escape the path of the fire.
工作一个小时之后
after a little over an hour of work
灭火员完成了一个从道路到小溪的连续隔离带
the smokejumpers completes a continuous fire line from the road to a stream
虽然小溪没有道路保险
Streams, while less secure than roads,
但也可以作为一个隔离带帮助停止或减慢火势
also help stop or slow down a fire by acting as a fire line.
在火灾的东南方向
To the south-east of the fire
还有一条连接着溪流的小路
there’s also a small road that connects to another stream
这代表火灾区附近至少有三条事先做好的隔离带
meaning there are at least rudimentary fire lines on three sides of the fire.
在这时增援队伍抵达道路
It’s at this time when backups arrive by road.
增援的人力加快了救火行动
The added manpower allows for much faster action.
救援直接聚焦加强东南方向的隔离带
the immediate focus goes to strengthening the southeastern fire line
那里目前只有一条溪流
currently just a stream
最近的大火离溪流100尺不到
at closest the fire is less than 100 feet from the stream
溪流在一个峡谷中
the stream is itself in a valley
所以直接在溪流后方工作风险太大
so it’s too risky to work directly behind the stream,
因为没有好的逃生路径
there’s just no good escape route
所以新来的救援人员
so the new arrivals get to work
要在距离溪流100多英尺的后方建立隔离带
on a redundant fire line 100 feet behind the stream.
到了上午10点火势依然在增长
By 10 am the fire has further grown
灭火小队知道最糟糕情况要到来了
and the team knows that the worst is still to come.
由于白天的温度和风 在上午10点到日落之间火势蔓延的最快
fire spreads most rapidly between 10 a.m. and sunset due to the daytime heat and wind.
到了上午11点 火势已经蔓延至道路和部分隔离带
by 11 a.m. the fire has reached the road and part of the fire line
这代表着要重新分配建立隔离带的人员数量
which means that some of those who are building the fire line are re-allocated
以确保隔离带能够不让一星火苗蔓延到道路上
to make sure that the fire-line holds extinguishing any flames that may jump the road.
到了中午隔离带依旧在
By noon the fire lines are holding
火势在以可控的速度蔓延
and all the fire size is growing it’s at a manageable pace
所以有望在火势蔓延速度失控之前将大火压制
so there’s reasonable hope that it can be suppressed before expanding to an uncontrollable size
然而在下午1点 事情出现了变局
At 1pm, though, conditions change.
风开始向西南方猛刮
The wind starts blowing harder towards the south-west
并且因为道路北边的树木开始燃烧
and as trees burn on the north side of the road,
风吹着灰烬点燃了树旁边的灌木丛
the wind pushes embers over the road which ignite underbrush on the other side
从而改变了整个灭火计划的方向
and now the entire focus of the firefighting efforts change.
灭火的重点并不是把火扑灭
You see, the point of fighting wildfires is not actually to put them out,
而是去控制火情
it’s to control them.
野火发生的次数会因人类而增加
While the number of wildfires has increased due to humans
这其实是一个非常自然的现象
they’re actually a very natural phenomenon.
让野火情况更糟糕是人类试图扑灭火灾
What’s making wildfires worse is humans stopping them.
许多森林在野火中幸存
Many forests survive wildfire
而让树木拥有耐热的树皮以及其他进化适应野火
through trees having heat-resistant bark and other evolutionary adaptations.
每隔几十年 这些耐火灾的森林依赖野火
These fire resistant forests relied on having wildfires
清理森林底层坏死的植物
at a consistent interval every few decades to clear out the forest floor of dead plants
和入侵的物种
and to kill invasive species.
但是 现在随着人们的救火行动
nowdays though, as humans suppress fires
森林大火可能从25年发生一次降至50年发生一次
a forest might only see a wildfire every 50 years years instead of 25,
但这也意味着森林有两倍的燃料
for example, meaning that there’s twice as much fuel
能让火燃烧的更快 更广 更凶猛
and so the fire burns faster, larger, and more intensely.
直到近几年的研究 野火的作用才被广泛接受
It was only until recent years that the research revealing this was widely accepted
于是灭火的目标从扑灭火情转变到完全控制火情
so the goals of firefighting shifted from stopping wildfires completely to controlling them.
在一些地方 成为一个消防员实际意味着放火
In some places, being a firefighter actually means starting fires.
消防管理机构要管理控制火情燃烧
Fire management agencies will conduct controlled burns
以减少不可控火灾的风险
in order to reduce the risk of an uncontrollable fire
并增加森林的健康
and to increase the health of a forest.
尽管森林能在火灾中幸存但人类却不能
while forests can survive wildfires humans cannot
所以大多数管理机构会让火情在可控范围内燃烧
so most agencies will let fires burn in a controlled fashion
直到他们认为火灾已经到损害财产 威胁人们生命的时候才会扑灭
up until the moment they risk damaging property or threatening human life.
火势已经蔓延到道路上
This fire that jumped the road just did exactly that.
在斜坡山脚有一个小镇
At the bottom of this slope is a town
火灾现在在向着小镇方向蔓延
and the fire is now headed in that direction
而小镇附近并没有任何防火装置阻止火势蔓延
with no preexisting features to stop it.
这意味着必须马上采取措施
That means that all measures must be taken
有效阻止火势向西方蔓延
to aggressively stop the fire’s expansion to the west.
是时候使用杀手锏了
that means it’s time to bring out the big guns
使用空中灭火的时间到了
it’s time to attack the fire from above.
飞机和直升机是扑灭野火最有效的工具
Planes and helicopters are some of the most effective tools used to fight wildfires.
它们能快速而精确地倾倒大量的水或是阻燃剂
They can quickly and accurately drop huge amounts of water or fire retardant.
但是实施空中灭火并没有那么容易
The decision to use aerial firefighting does not come lightly
因为空中灭火非常昂贵
as it’s both hugely expensive
并且在一个火灾中用一架飞机
and using an aircraft on one fire
意味着飞机在另一个火灾中无法使用
means it can’t be used on another
飞机需要优先用于最危险的火灾上
Their use needs to be prioritized for the most dangerous fires.
同时也要决定
There’s also a decision to be made
飞机要投放什么灭火 是水还是阻燃剂
on what the aircraft is going to drop—water or flame retardant.
水便宜 并且因为一些飞机的设计
Water is cheap and, with some aircraft designs,
在火灾附近甚至不需要着陆就能装载水源
can be reloaded near the fire without landing at an airport.
不过水只能熄灭明火
Water is only effective at extinguishing flames,though.
在另一方面
Flame retardant, on the other hand,
阻燃剂能一开始就阻燃火焰燃烧
can be used to stop flames from starting.
阻燃剂本质上是在火势蔓延前方建立一个隔离带
it can essentially create a fire line ahead of the fire spread
阻燃剂能阻止燃烧森林的路线
as it will stop a line of forest from burning.
然而一个主要问题是
The main issues, though,
阻燃剂必须在机场装载
are that flame retardant can only be loaded at an airport
并且非常昂贵
and it’s a very expensive
最常用的阻燃剂品牌
A gallon of Phos-Chek,
Phos-Chek 一加仑要3美元
the most commonly used brand of flame retardant, costs $ 3.
虽然这和杂货店里一加仑牛奶的价格差不多
that’s about the same as a gallon of milk at the grocery store
但是这些飞机每次倾倒都要用上千加仑
but these aircraft use thousands of gallons of it for each drop.
举例来说 世界最大的灭火飞机 747超级灭火机
The world’s largest firefighting aircraft,the 747 supertanker
能够携带19600加仑阻燃剂
for example carries 19 thousand six hundred gallons of flame retardant
这意味着一次倾倒的费用就将近6千美金
meaning that what it uses in one drop costs nearly $60,000.
当然机构雇佣这个飞机也有一定原因
Of course there’s a reason agencies hire this plane,
因为747灭火机几乎在一瞬间就建立长达3英里的隔离带
it creates a three-mile long fire line almost instantly
不过花费也很昂贵
but it comes at a steep price.
在这次火灾使用如此昂贵的工具有点小题大做
For this fire, using such an expensive tool would be overkill.
这里 灭火员会使用一个带有水桶的直升机
In this case, they’ll use a helicopter with a bucket attached.
水桶已经从附近的湖里灌满了水
the bucket is filled with water from a nearby lake
然后直升机飞至火灾区 并将水倾倒下去
then the helicopter flies over to the fire and drops it.
因为离湖只有5英里
With only 5 miles to the lake
所以直升机每五到十分钟就可以完成一次倾倒
the helicopter is able to make a drop about every 5-10 minutes
直升机一边阻止火势蔓延
and while it works on stopping the spread on one side
作业组一边忙着在另外一边建立隔离带
hand crews work on building a fire line on the other.
直升机灭火的地方本质上也扮演着一个隔离带
the area that the helicopter extinguishes essentially acts as its own fire line
一直建立隔离带直到可燃物燃烧殆尽
as fire can’t burn what’s already burned.
这个工作要持续几个小时
This work continues for the next few hours
至关重要的是不要让西南
It’s vital to not let anything to the south-west
方向道路的燃烧失去控制
of the road burn out of control.
到了下午四点爆发性火情被控制
By 4pm the outbreak is managed
重心重新回到最大的火灾区域
and attention can be directed back to the largest section of the fire
随着下午缓慢的流逝
As the afternoon wears on
一些工作人员重新回到东边延长隔离带
some crews get back to lengthening the eastern fire line
其他人开始建造西边的隔离带
others begin constructing a western fire line,
直升机继续减慢向北方前进的火势
and the helicopter works on slowing the advancement to the north.
到了将近8点太阳快要落山的时候
By the time the sun begins to set around 8,
所有的火势都得到了一些控制
all sides of the fire have at least some element of control
在接下来的几天里
so that during the night and in the coming days
大火会在一个可控制的范围内继续燃烧
the fire can continue to burn in a controlled fashion
直到没有东西可烧
until there’s nothing left to burn.
这个任务很成功
This mission was a success
但是实际上这不是一次真正的火灾
but the reality is that this is not a real fire
真正的火灾很少让人满意的结束
Real fires rarely end this well.
真正的火灾不会表现的那么可预测性
Real fires don’t act so predictably
因为真正的火灾是无法预测的
because real fires can’t be predicted.
真正的火灾是一个威胁 最大面积可达到小国的面积
real fires are a menace that can grow to the size of small countries
并且能燃烧数月
and can burn for months.
在夏天和秋天
During summer and fall,
经常有100多场森林火灾
there are often more than 100 large forest fires
在美国或世界上的一千多个国家
burning around the US at any given time
随时都可以发生火灾
and thousands more around the world
任何一个灭火方案都不可能一模一样
no firefighting effort is exactly like another
但这些方法是
but these are the primary techniques used
那些每天与最危险的自然现象斗争
by those who work everyday to protect life and property
保护生命和财产的消防员们最常用的
from one of nature’s most dangerous phenomenons.
不管你是在扑灭森林火灾或经营一项生意
whether you’re fighting forest fires or running a business
你使用的工具至关重要
the tools you use are crucially important.
工具都直接影响到你的工作是否做好
In both cases they directly affect how well you do your job
虽然链锯 斧子
and while chainsaws, axes,
和铁锹是灭火时最重要的工具
and shovels are some of the most important tools in firefighting,
但方形空间却是你经商时不可缺少的工具之一
Squarespace is one of the most important tools for running a business.
因为在方形空间建立的网站
That’s because having a Squarespace website
能帮助你在网络中被搜索到
helps you be found on the internet and presents you
并将你和你的工作以最好的方式呈现给大家
or what you do in the best way possible.
这里有精美的设计器模板 可定制的建站服务
there are beautiful designer templates and customizable website builder
能够轻松制作出美观好用的网站
make it easy to make something that looks and functions great.
使用方形空间 就可以轻松运营博客 组合网站 网店
You can easily run a blog a portfolio site and an online store
或是其他类型的网站
or really any other type of website with Squarespace
不仅建立网站非常简单
while it’s all super simple
该网站还全天候24小时提供帮助
they have a word waiting 24/7 customer support to help you
好消息 现在前往Squarespace.com/Wendover建立网站
The best news is that you can build your website for 10% off
能得到九折优惠
by going to Squarespace. com/Wendover
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and you’ll be supporting the show while you’re at it

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视频概述

如何对抗野火

听录译者

收集自网络

翻译译者

楼舜

审核员

审核员YZ

视频来源

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EodxubsO8EI

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