Expect Smoke On Rim From Prescribed Burns

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Beginning this past, Tuesday, the Forest Service started conducting prescribed burns on up to 400 acres, northwest of Whispering Pines.

The operation will focus primarily on needles and dead and down debris from the forest floor. Debris piles will also be burned, said Gary Roberts, fire prevention officer with the Forest Service.

"Residents and visitors in Rim Country can expect to see residual smoke from the burn operation throughout the week," he said.

The burn will only take place if optimal conditions are present. Temperature, wind speed and direction, fuel moisture content and humidity are some of the factors taken into consideration, prior to a prescribed burn, Roberts said.

"If conditions are not ideal, the prescribed burn will be postponed or shut down," he said.

About 45 acres of debris piles were the cause of smoke last Thursday. That burn took place west of Whispering Pines and east of Control Road 438.

Coconino burns set

If conditions are favorable, the Coconino National Forest has a number of possible prescribe burns schedule for this week.

The following are the possible prescribed burns for Oct 15-19.

Mormon Lake Ranger District: Mint project area southeast of Mormon Lake. Approximately 300 acres per day. Smoke should impact be minimal. Also, crews plan to begin the Rocky project, west of Rocky Park exit and I-17, approximately 300 acres per day. Smoke will be visible along I-17 from

Mogollon Rim Ranger District: Crews will continue working on the Victorine project area, east of Clints Well. Approximately 200 acres per day. Smoke may impact the area near Blue Ridge Ranger Station and Highway 87.

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