SANTA FE, NM – Dec. 5, 2016 – For Immediate Release. Fire managers on the Santa Fe National Forest are planning prescribed burns on the Jemez, Cuba, Coyote and Pecos/Las Vegas Ranger Districts this week if conditions, including weather, winds and air quality, are favorable. Ignitions may begin as early as Tuesday, Dec. 6. The planned prescribed burns include:
• La Jara prescribed pile burn on the Cuba Ranger District. The 20-acre treatment area is located northeast of the community of La Jara. Smoke may be visible from La Jara, Cuba, Regina, NM 96 and US 550.
• Joaquin Canyon prescribed pile burn on the Jemez and Cuba Ranger Districts. The 300-acre treatment area is 3 miles west of Forest Road (FR) 376, 1 mile north of FR 488 and 1 mile south of Rita La Cueva Meadow off FR 534. Smoke may be visible from Jemez Springs, the Pueblo of Jemez, Gilman, Seven Springs, La Cueva, US 550 and NM 4.
• Mesa Potrero prescribed pile burn on the Coyote Ranger District. The 470-acre treatment area is located 7 miles northwest of Coyote. Smoke may be visible from Gallina, Coyote, Youngsville, US 84 between Abiquiu and Ghost Ranch, and NM 96.
• Coyote Remote Automated Weather Station (RAWS) prescribed pile burn on the Coyote Ranger District. The 5-acre treatment area is 5 miles south-southwest of Coyote. Smoke may be visible from Gallina, Lindrith, Coyote, Regina, Youngsville, Abiquiu and US 84.
• Gallinas Watershed prescribed burn on the Pecos/Las Vegas Ranger District. Fire crews will focus on a 180-acre block in the Las Dispensas area and a 1,120-acre unit on Johnson Mesa. Smoke may be visible from Gallinas, El Porvenir, San Pablo, Mineral Hill, San Geronimo, Gascon, Panderies, Las Vegas and along the I-25 corridor.
Prescribed fires are one of the most effective tools available to resource managers for restoring fire-adapted ecosystems. These fires mimic natural fires by reducing forest fuels, recycling nutrients and increasing habitat diversity. The prescribed burns planned for this week are designed to remove dead forest fuels, provide community protection and promote forest health. Prescribed fires are managed with firefighter and public safety as the first priority.
Smoke from the prescribed burns will be monitored to ensure that New Mexico Environment Department’s Air Quality Bureau regulations are being met, and the information will be available to provide health advisories as necessary. Lingering smoke may be present for up to one week after ignitions are complete.
Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory problems are encouraged to take precautionary measures. Information on air quality and protecting your health can be found online at the New Mexico Department of Health website at https://nmtracking.org/fire.
For additional information about the prescribed burns, please contact the respective ranger district offices:
• Coyote RD at 575.638.5526
• Cuba RD at 575.289.3264
• Jemez RD at 575.829.3535
• Pecos/Las Vegas RD at 505.757.6121 or 505.425.3534
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