Fire managers on the south zone of the Kaibab National Forest have completed plans for the 2017 fall and 2018 spring prescribed fire burning seasons and expect to begin working in several project areas by the end of this month. The specific units to be ignited will be chosen based on fuel moistures and weather conditions that are within prescriptive levels that meet fuels reduction objectives.
The flowing project areas are planned for treatments:
Green Base Dry Lake Project: Thirteen burn units northeast of Williams, north of I-40 and east of Highway 64 near Pittman Valley. This project is a total of 5,990 acres.
Green Base Hardy Project: Five burn units also northeast of Williams, north of I-40 and east of Highway 64 near Pittman Valley. This project is a total of 3,846 acres.
Sunflower Project: Seven burn units south of Williams, between County Road 73 and Whitehorse Lake. This project is a total of 15,195 acres.
Reed Project: Three burn units 5 miles east of Tusayan and just south of the Grand Canyon National Park. This project size is 1,182 acres.
Fire plays a beneficial role in maintaining the ecological stability of many landscapes including the Kaibab National Forest. Managers use prescribed fire as a practical means to reduce risks associated with uncharacteristic wildfires that can pose significant threats to public health and safety.
Officials understand that impacts to air quality may be unpleasant at times, however they can significantly reduce the amount and limit the duration of smoke more effectively using prescribed methods as opposed to an uncontrolled wildfire situation. Fire managers will continue to be mindful of wind direction and ventilation and will take a proactive approach to minimize smoke impacts to businesses and residences whenever possible.
During operations, fire personnel and vehicles working in these vicinities will be visible to the public. Motorists are reminded to slow down and drive with heightened caution when passing through active project areas.
All prescribed burning on the Kaibab National Forest is subject to approval by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality.
For additional information on the Smoke Management Division of the ADEQ and to view prescribed burns authorizations, please visit www.azdeq.gov/environ/air/smoke/index.html. Additional fire information for Kaibab National Forest can be obtained through the following sources: InciWeb inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5160/ Kaibab National Forest Fire Information Phone Line (928) 635-8311; Text Message – text ‘follow kaibabnf’ to 40404.