Gila National Forest: L-T West Prescribed Burn Planned on Wilderness Ranger District

Mimbres, NM; April 6, 2018 – For Immediate Release – The Wilderness Ranger District will be conducting prescribed burning in the L-T West burn area. The planned dates to start is April 9, weather dependent. This project is funded by New Mexico Department of Game & Fish, Big Game Enhancement Program.

The L-T West Rx Burn is located off Hwy 35 near mile marker 17, east of the Old GOS Ranch, between Lincoln Canyon (FSR 4079T), Terry Canyon (FSR 4079V), McKenna Mesa (FSR 4079C), FSR 4079P and North Star Road (also known as the Wall Lake Road, FSR 150).  The project is a 5,500 acre broadcast burn and will take several days to complete. Ignitions within the burn area will be done by helicopter ping-pong drops.

Smoke and flames will be noticeable during days of ignitions and will linger at night and early morning and will impact Highway 35. For firefighter and public safety, Gila National Forest officials remind the public to not enter or park near the project areas and to watch for firefighters and equipment in the described locations.

Prescribed burns mimic natural fires by reducing forest fuels, recycling nutrients and increasing habitat diversity. The prescribed burns are designed to remove dead forest fuels, provide community protection and promote forest health. Prescribed fires are managed with firefighter and public safety as first priority. Smoke from the prescribed burn will be monitored to ensure that the New Mexico Environment Department’s Air Quality Bureau regulations are being met.

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/environment/air/FireAndSmoke.html.

For more information on the prescribed burns, contact the Wilderness Ranger District 575-535-2250.

Gila

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