The Bureau of Indian Affairs Fort Apache Agency Fire Management in coordination with the White Mountain Apache Tribe will begin prescribed burn operations Tuesday, October 13, 2015. Approximately 15,000 acres are targeted to be treated by either pile burning or broadcast burning within several burn units on the Fort Apache Indian Reservation.
The late fall prescribe burning conditions have low to moderate fire intensity which produces beneficial post-fire effects. These small prescribed fires will help reduce fuel accumulation from logging and thinning projects, decrease the risk of high intensity wildfire, and to protect communities. Broadcast burns involve applying fire across the forest floor. Flames make their way along the surface, consuming accumulated needles, leaves, branches, and logs while recycling nutrients back into the soil. Broadcast burns typically produce the most noticeable smoke.
Nearby residents should expect smoke in the vicinity and drivers should pay extra attention while traveling through or adjacent to burn areas particularly along highway 73 from Post Office Canyon to Hondah and State Route 260 east of Hondah. All Prescribed Fire activity will be carefully monitored and will comply with smoke management guidelines to reduce the impact of smoke on local residents. If conditions become unfavorable prescribed burning efforts will be ceased to mitigate smoke impacts to the communities.
Prescribed burning efforts will continue as long as weather conditions permit and targeted acres are completed. If you have any questions regarding our upcoming prescribed burning efforts, you can call Candy Lupe, Public Information Officer at (928) 338-5425 or (928) 205-5662.