Pile burning happening along Highway 97 south of Bend this week


Expect to see smoke and flames along Highway 97 south of Bend Tuesday and perhaps later this week.

The Deschutes National Forest says Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District firefighters plan to conduct pile burning operations adjacent to Highway 97 between Lava Butte north to the weigh station.

DNF says removing wood debris now will help reduce overall fire danger. The Forest Service says the piles are concentrations of leftover materials associated with vegetation management activities being done to help maintain and restore forest and ecosystem health while reducing hazardous fuels loading.

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While ignitions are slated for Tuesday, they could happen later in the week depending on the conditions.

DNF says smoke and flames will be visible from the Highway 97 corridor. Signage will be in place to alert drivers of pile burning operations.

Piles may smolder, burn and produce smoke for several days after ignition. Once ignited, firefighters monitor piles until they are declared out.

Residents should know that smoke may settle in low-lying areas due to the cool evening temperatures. Drivers are urged to slow down in smoky areas and turn on headlights.



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