The Springerville Ranger District on the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests is planning to conduct prescribed fire operations March 14 and 15. The district plans to burn approximately 1,830 acres on the Garris East Unit, southeast of Vernon. Personnel will remain on scene monitoring the burn through the weekend as needed.
Smoke will be seen from Round Valley, Arizona State Highway 260, U.S. Highway 60 and along Forest Road 61. Prescribed burning enhances wildlife habitat and watershed conditions, while promoting forest health and protecting communities from the effects of future high severity wildfire. This prescribed fire is in cooperation with the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s Habitat Partnership Committee, as well as the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and Mule Deer Foundation.
Ignitions will occur throughout the morning to minimize the adverse effects of smoke on the local communities. Motorists are advised to drive safely when approaching areas where prescribed fire activities may limit visibility and hinder fire personnel operations.
All prescribed 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.
Questions or concerns contact 928-333-6280 or visit the ASNFs website at: www.fs.usda.gov/asnf