The Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests’ Lakeside Ranger District will be burning slash piles February 15, 2018. The ignition area is in the Timber Knoll Project area along Forest Service Road 3D and 9900L. Smoke impact is anticipated along U.S. Highway 60 and within the Vernon Community. Smoke may be visible from the communities of Show Low, Pinetop-Lakeside and Vernon. In the interest of safety, forest visitors are reminded to use caution when traveling in the vicinity of the pile burn as smoke may reduce visibility in the area.
Prescribed burning provides many benefits and is essential to maintaining healthy forest ecosystems. It provides habitat diversity, recycles plant nutrients into the soil and encourages new growth for a variety of plants used by wildlife and livestock. Prescribed burning of forest ground fuels also reduces the threat of large scale wildfire impacts to private lands. After ignitions, personnel will monitor the area as needed. Prescribed fire operations are subject to cancelation due to unfavorable weather conditions.
All prescribed burns including pile burns, are approved through the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) before ignition begins. The ADEQ monitors air quality and determines whether or not it will be a good day for smoke dispersion. Although smoke from prescribed fire can still be noticeable, it is usually for a shorter time and considerably less smoke than wildfires produce. If you are sensitive to smoke or have respiratory problems, stay indoors if possible.
For questions or concerns please contact the Lakeside Ranger District at (928) 368-2100, or dial 311 to reach the Northeastern Arizona Public Information System. Also, check out our website at www.fs.usda.gov/asnf or follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/apachesitgreavesnfs/