Conejos Fire Update – Aug. 2, 2019

SANTA FE, NM – Aug. 2, 2019 – Fire crews were able to put some low-intensity fire on the ground late yesterday in spite of recent moisture. Fire managers are planning to continue firing operations on the Conejos Fire today as long as weather will allow.

Start date: July 29, 2019

Cause: Lightning

Location: Conejos Peak on the Jemez Ranger District adjacent to Forest Road 266 about 4 miles northeast of the Paliza Campground and 5 miles from the community of Ponderosa.

Size: Estimated at 55 acres

Fuels: Primarily ponderosa pine

Resources on scene: Type 4 Incident Commander, one Hotshot crew, one Type 2 initial attack crew, Santa Fe County Fire Department’s Black Canyon hand crew, Jemez Pueblo’s Jemez Eagles Type 2 crew, two Type 6 engines and miscellaneous overhead.

Current status: The Conejos Fire continues to burn through heavy fuels, backing down slopes and removing ladder fuels from an area that has not seen fire in a long time. If the weather cooperates, the plan is to continue firing operations today,

Weather: A 90% chance of precipitation includes widespread showers and thunderstorms in the afternoon and winds of 5-10 mph. The forecast is for heavy rainfall through the weekend.

Predicted smoke impact: Smoke is visible from US Highway 550, San Ysidro and Jemez Pueblo.

The Santa Fe National Forest (SFNF) can take advantage of natural ignitions like the Conejos Fire to improve conditions on the ground by getting rid of woody material and debris on the forest floor. The weather this weekend will determine whether the Conejos Fire can continue to achieve resource benefits by reintroducing fire to a fire-adapted forest ecosystem. Firefighter and public safety is always the first priority on all wildland fire incidents.

Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory problems or heart disease are encouraged to take precautionary measures. Information on air quality and protecting your health by using the 5-3-1 visibility method can be found online at the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) Environmental Public Health Tracking (EPHT) website at https://nmtracking.org/fire. People with health concerns can also call NMDOH at 505-827-0006 for additional information. For information on the HEPA filter loan program, go to https://facnm.org/smoke#smokeanchor5.

Fire updates are posted on the New Mexico Fire Information website at www.nmfireinfo.com, www.facebook.com/SantaFeNF and Twitter @SantafeNF. For additional information about the Conejos Fire, please contact the Jemez Ranger District at 575-829-3535.

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