Prescribed fire operations planned for Arrowhead Estates area next week

Release Date: Feb 8, 2013  

150 acres of piles to be burned Tuesday and Wednesday

Payson, Ariz. (February 8, 2013) – Payson Ranger District fire specialists plan to eliminate 150 acres of vegetative debris piles in the Arrowhead Estates area Tuesday and Wednesday, Feb. 12 and 13, 2013

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 during each day of the prescribed fire operation.

Diurnal air flow will move residual smoke in the evening hours down the East Verde Corridor and will heavily impact the Tonto Natural Bridge area both days of the operation due to cold, inert winter air. Smoke may linger in the area thru Feb. 15.

“Last week we eliminated 150 acres of vegetative debris piles in the Verde Glen area, “ said Gary Roberts, district fire prevention officer. “Debris piles typically weigh from a half-a-ton to a ton-and-a-half each. The prescribed fire operation in the Verde Glen area last week eliminated between 5250 to 6000 vegetative debris piles. Residents and visitors to the area may see internal fire creep until snow arrives.”

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 upon optimal weather conditions before ignitions begin, such as relative humidity, wind speed and direction, fuel moisture content, temperature, 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