PRESCRIBED BURNS STARTING SOON
As fire conditions moderate throughout the Umpqua Valley, fire officials with the Douglas Forest Protective Association will begin working with farmers, ranchers, and other landowners to conduct prescribed burns throughout the area. Prescribed burns may be conducted on fields, pastures, and hillsides to promote productive grazing lands for livestock and to improve habitat for wildlife, all while reducing the buildup of flammable vegetation. Burn permits for backyard debris burning, including both debris piles and burn barrels, will not be issued at this time.
Over the last ten years, local landowner’s working with DFPA have completed an average of 3,400 acres of prescribed burns annually throughout the Douglas District. For many agricultural landowners, fire is used as a tool to prepare their lands for the next growing season by removing noxious weeds, brush, insects, and plant disease from their lands. Prescribed burns are also beneficial to firefighters by reducing the buildup of brush and other flammable vegetation throughout the area which is potential fuel for future wildfires.
Before fire is introduced onto the landscape, prescribed burns are made safe by the construction of fire trails around the proposed burn site. In addition, landowners must be able to demonstrate that they have the ability and resources in the form of fire suppression equipment and personnel on site to maintain control of the prescribed burn. Once fire trails are approved by DFPA and weather conditions are favorable, a permit may be issued to complete the prescribed burn.
Fire officials say that the effects from prescribed burns on populated areas will be minimized by allowing them to only take place when both fire conditions and weather patterns are favorable for a safe, effective burn to occur. By coordinating when and where prescribed burns take place, the smoke impacts to the surrounding areas can be mitigated.