Fire Crews Proceed with La Jara Pile Burns Today

TAOS, NM – Jan. 20, 2021 – After successful test ignitions, crews are proceeding with the previously announced La Jara pile burns today on the Carson National Forest to reduce the amount of hazardous fuels on the ground.

The recent winter storm that moved through New Mexico helped create optimal conditions to burn slash piles. Snow on the ground keeps the fire from spreading to adjacent vegetation. Generally, pile burns produce less smoke and burn with less intensity than broadcast burns across a larger landscape. Prescribed fires are one of the most effective tools available to resource managers for restoring fire-adapted ecosystems.

The 50-acre La Jara pile burns adjacent to the Taos Pines Community near Palo Flechado Pass on Hwy 64 are designed to remove woody debris from previously thinned areas and reduce the risk of high-severity wildfire.

The prescribed pile burns will be managed with firefighter and public safety as the first priority.

The Carson National Forest manages prescribed fires in compliance with New Mexico state regulations on air quality and smoke management. Smoke from the La Jara pile burn may be visible from the surrounding areas during and after ignitions begin. A high priority of these prescribed burns will be to minimize smoke impacts to the surrounding communities by utilizing available Emissions Reduction Techniques (ERTs).

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 can be found online at the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) Environmental Public Health Tracking (EPHT) website.

Fire updates will be posted on the Carson National Forest websiteNew Mexico Fire Information website and on the Carson National Forest Facebook page and Twitter @CarsonNF.

For more information on the La Jara pile burns, contact the Camino Real Ranger District at 575-587-2255.

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