Fire officials on the Smokey Bear Ranger District in Ruidoso, NM, are planning to take advantage of favorable weather conditions as they begin prescribed burning operations on the Eagle 1 project this week. The 2.4-acre project is located about five miles north, northwest of Ruidoso, off of NM State Highway 532 (Ski Run Road). Slash piles that have been distributed throughout the area will be eliminated by lighting the individual piles, progressing from one pile to the next as conditions allow. Ignitions are dependent upon weather conditions on the day of the burn and during the burning period. Fire managers monitor conditions closely to ensure that they are within the ranges that have been identified in the burn plan. Successful prescribed burning results in good smoke dispersal and desired fire effects. “This prescribed fire will reduce fuel loads, which can help minimize potential wildfire risks and impacts to the area,” said Dan Ray, Assistant Fire Management Officer on the Smokey Bear Ranger District. “Public and firefighter safety are always primary objectives during fire-related activities and missions,” Ray added.
During ignition operations, smoke may be visible from Ruidoso, Alto, and surrounding areas. Smoke may settle into drainages and lower elevations at night, but is expected to dissipate by late-morning, as daytime temperatures increase. In the event that smoke is encountered on travel ways, motorists are advised to reduce travel speeds and turn lights on.
Additional projects that have been identified in the “Greater Ruidoso and Lincoln County Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP)” will be implemented, as weather conditions allow; the CWPP is available at: http://www.emnrd.state.nm.us/FD/FireMgt/cwpps.htm.
For more information about prescribed fire projects on the Smokey Bear Ranger District, please call the District Office at 575-257-4095, Monday through Friday, 7:30 am to 4:30 pm. You can also find us at www.fs.usda.gov/lincoln and follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LincolnUSForest