▶️ Forest Service takes advantage of nice weather to ignite prescribed burns


A nice warm day with light winds and the Forest Service jumps right on it, igniting nearly 800 acres of prescribed burns. 

Prescribed burns are another way of fighting fire with fire.

On Wednesday, the forest service lit up 555 acres near Pine Mountain, reintroducing fire in a controlled fashion.

By burning now when the threat is low, managers reduce the chances of high intensity wildfire burning through in the heat of summer when it is much harder to control. 

“We rely on pockets of good weather for our prescribed burning. That means fire will carry but not burn with too much intensity,” said Jaimie Olle, public information officer for the Deschutes National Forest. “We have prescriptions for each of our prescribed burns and we wait until those conditions are met before we ignite them.” 

The trees, brush and grasses in Central Oregon need to burn occasionally. 

If they don’t, they get dense, dry and can contribute to out of control wildfires that threaten people, homes and entire ecosystems. 

“Firefighters wait until conditions are right to come out and do these prescribed burns. They are applying fire in a very systematic method with a drip torch that allows them to control how much fire is on the ground. The units already have lines around them so they are already contained,” Olle said. “Once we put fire on the ground, firefighters continually patrol them until that fire is completely out.”

Smoke from this week’s prescribed fires near Pine Mountain, Sisters and Crescent may settle in low-lying areas at night.

Residents are encouraged to close windows to reduce smoke impacts.

Drivers who encounter smoke drifting across roads should slow down and turn on headlights.



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