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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT

Oregon / Washington

Fire Prevention

Smokey Bear

The BIFZ Fire Prevention Office is located at:
265 HWY 20 South
Hines, Oregon 97738
541-573-4300

All About Smokey Bear

Dressed in a ranger's hat, belted blue jeans, and carrying a shovel, Smokey Bear has been associated with wildfire prevention since 1944. Today, Smokey is highly recognized both nationally and internationally as a symbol of wildfire prevention.

On August 9, 1944, a wildfire prevention symbol was agreed upon by the Forest Service and the Wartime Ad Council. An artist was asked to paint the first poster of Smokey Bear. It showed a bear pouring a bucket of water on a campfire. Smokey soon became very popular and his image was placed on many fire prevention materials.

Fire Prevention Activities in 2004

Starting in May this year the Burns Interagency Fire Zone began the prevention season with the Bicycle Safety Rodeo at Slater Elementary. Smokey Bear visited the school to give fire prevention and safety messages. We also had a fun time playing games! Children from Kindergarten to fifth grade attended. Smokey Bear visited the Early Childhood Center (Filmore) in May to discuss Smokey’s “Friends Don’t Play with Matches” prevention message and also what damage fire can do when started both naturally and by humans. We also talked about the story behind Smokey Bear and how he was founded. The kids had a fun time looking and talking about Engine 427, and visiting with the fire crew. We also sang Smokey’s Fire Prevention Song and handed out lots of prevention materials to the kids. Children at the Early Childhood Center are three to five years old.

The Fire Prevention Sign map was updated this year. Sign locations were GPS, and given numbers and names. Primitive campsites were put on the map to help locate campers. The Zone maintains 26 prevention signs. There are six metal portal entry signs, two fire closure signs, three fire danger rating signs, and fifteen poster signs. The sign frames were oiled and stained this year

The patrolling phase of prevention began on the 4th of July holiday. Contact was made with the public to remind them of no fireworks and also current fire restrictions. Smokey Bear made his appearance at the Dessert Dash Rally in August. Fire prevention materials were also handed out to children at Hines Park.

In September the Burns Interagency Fire Zone hosted a booth at the Harney County Fair. Children enjoyed playing miniature golf and throwing bean bags for prizes. A fire prevention question must have been answered before participating. The BLM, USFS, and Oregon Department of Forestry all entered engines in the parade to celebrate Smokey’s 60th birthday! Smokey Bear attended the fair’s parade, rodeo, talent show, and the BIFZ fair booth. The booth was staffed for 5 days.

The hunters booth at Sentry Market was held in October. Representatives from BIFZ were eager to inform hunters of fire restrictions and conditions, and the hunters were happy to hear there were none! Information on past, current, and expected prescribed burns was also provided. The BLM, USFS, and the County all provided maps for hunters to buy. Fire prevention materials were handed out to children.

The Christmas parade was held in December in which BIFZ entered an engine decorated in lights, and Smokey Bear wished everyone a happy holiday season.

Fire Prevention at Slater Grade School (2003)

In celebration of National Fire Prevention Week, members of the Burns Interagency Fire Zone and the city Volunteer Fire Department joined forces with Smokey Bear to teach Kindergarteners through 4th graders all about fire safety, fire suppression, and fire prevention. Students spent time learning about each of the fire engines on site (city and wildland), participated in safety sessions on campfire use and fire safety, received collection bags full of prevention materials like rulers, pencils, stickers, coloring books, magnets, and posters, and watched a foam spraying demonstration.

A BIFZ engine captain showed the students all the parts and pieces of a heavy engine including tools, hoses, fittings, pumps, safety supplies, meals-ready-to-eat, maps, weather kits, and other essentials. The children also learned about personal protective equipment and were able to see the differences between wildland fire equipment and city fire equipment. All students heard a safety presentation about campfires and learned the importance of using fire rings and making sure your fire is out before leaving the area. To close out the day, everyone received a bag full of prevention reminders and watched a foam spraying demonstration from the city fire department.

Fire Prevention at the 2000 Harney County Fair

Smokey Bear's visit to the carnival was an effort to help educate youth about the importance of preventing accidental, human-caused wildfires and their effects upon life, property, and natural resources. The focus of the visit was on promoting wildfire prevention, and Smokey Bear as a teacher, as a friend, and as the guardian of our land.

2000 Harney County Fair 2000 Harney County Fair 2000 Harney County Fair 2000 Harney County Fair 2000 Harney County Fair

Smokey Bear Poster Contest & Winner

The Frenchglen School won the 2000 Smokey Bear poster contest. Check out the pictures below!

Frenchglen School Frenchglen School Frenchglen School
Frenchglen School Frenchglen School Frenchglen School