Prescribed fire operations planned for Verde Glen and Thompson Draw II areas next week

Release Date: Feb 1, 2013  

Piles to be burned in Verde Glen area Mon.-Tue. and Thompson Draw II area Wed.-Thurs.

Payson, Ariz. (February 1, 2013) – Prescribed fire operations to eliminate vegetative debris piles in the Verde Glen and Thompson Draw II areas will be conducted by Payson Ranger District fire specialists Monday thru Thursday (Feb. 4 thru 7).

Verde Glen – Ignitions will begin Monday and Tuesday (Feb. 4 and 5) to eliminate 150 acres of debris piles east of Verde Glen and Rim Trail.

Fire personnel will mitigate smoke impacts by ending ignitions by 3 pm each day.

Residents and visitors to the area can expect to see and smell moderate to heavy amounts of smoke that may linger in the area thru Friday, Feb. 8.

Diurnal air flow will move residual smoke in the evening hours down the East Verde Corridor and will impact the communities of Verde Glen, Rim Trail, Washington Park, Whispering Pines, Beaver Valley, Flowing Springs, East Verde Estates, and adjacent areas.

“The cold, inert winter air will impact these communities with heavy smoke,” said Gary Roberts, district fire prevention officer. “We appreciate the understanding and support of residents and property owners as we work to protect areas like this from the very real threat of wildfire.”

Thompson Draw II - Ignitions will continue Wednesday and Thursday (Feb. 6 and 7) to eliminate 3-5 acres of debris piles in the Thompson Draw II area.

Residents and visitors to this area can expect to see and smell light amounts of smoke during the operation.

When fire operations begin, signs will be posted along roads that are likely to be affected by smoke. Motorists are urged to use caution while driving through these areas and to slow down for the safety of firefighters and the public.

Prescribed fire treatments are always dependent on optimal weather conditions, such as fuel moisture content, temperature, relative humidity, wind speed and directions, and other variables.

Prescription fire requests must be approved by Arizona Department of Environmental Quality for each day of the burning operations.

For further information, please call the Payson Ranger District at 928-474-7900.  Residents can also stay updated on prescribed fires at www.fs.usda.gov/tonto