WILLIAMS, Arizona — Effective May 31, the Kaibab National Forest Fire Manager will open fires at the Three Sisters Prescription Fire Project, located just north of the city of Williams and Interstate 40, east of Forest Road 124, and west of Airport Road. It is planned to resume the prescribed fire treatment. The project has been inactive since workers completed processing his 2,241 acres in the fall of 2019. This time, the worker is targeting a total of 1,509 acres, and he expects ignition to take one or two times, depending on conditions.
Area residents and visitors can expect to see helicopter operations in the area as air ignition occurs in the burn area.
Residents are urged to refrain from using any kind of drone system in the vicinity of the project area that may interfere with aircraft operations.
Approximately 75 personnel will be assigned to the fire, including accident meteorologists to advise fire managers on current and projected weather, and the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality to model and monitor smoke. Includes the Air Resources Advisor for the Air Resources Division.
Smoke will be visible from the Williams area, particularly the Country Club/Elephant Rocks Golf Course, HA Clark Memorial Field Airport, Cataract Lake Park, Kaibab Lake, Ash Fork, Valle, and portions of State Route 64 and Interstate 40. .
Smoke is expected to rise during the day and move northeast through the Red Lake Valley, but cooler nighttime temperatures may cause the smoke to settle in the lowlands surrounding the burn site.
Roads and sidewalks are not scheduled to be closed as part of the Three Sisters Code Fire project, but firefighters and vehicles will be visible to the public during the operation. Drivers are advised to exercise caution when passing through areas where projects are underway.
Fire managers are aware that local residents may be sensitive to smoke and employ strategies to limit the amount and duration of smoke. This involves breaking large projects into smaller units. This allows workers to focus when and where to work in conditions that help disperse smoke from development areas and ventilate them more quickly, reducing the impact on local residents and businesses.
The 1,509-acre site comprises two units of the 7,400-acre Three Sisters project. A prescribed fire with a short-term impact on air quality can help significantly reduce public health and safety risks.
The goals of prescribed fire treatments include reducing the threat of unnaturally severe wildfires and their potential negative impact on local communities, improving forest health, and relying on frequent fires to maintain resilience. including reintroducing fire into ecosystems that are
Prescribed fires help reduce drought, climate change, insects and disease, and toxic fuels accumulated over decades of firefighting efforts. Fire also recycles nutrients into the soil, promotes growth of trees, wildflowers and other plants, and improves habitats for endangered and endangered species.
Land management strategies center on long-term forest health, including reducing forest fuels and using prescribed fires for the landscape. These efforts are in line with the Forest Service’s 10-Year Wildfire Crisis Strategy, which aims to increase prescribed fires and other treatments and improve the resilience of forests for future generations.
Approximately 3,600 acres of the Three Sisters project will remain for processing after the unit is completed next week. The crew may restart these remaining units later this year, when conditions permit.
All prescribed fires are subject to approval by agency management and the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. His web page for the Department’s Air Quality Division: Smoke Management has details of the air quality program.
Kaibab National Forest remains committed to providing as much advanced notice and ongoing updates to the public as possible.
For additional information, check the Kaibab NF website, Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, call the Fire Information Hotline at 928-635-8311, or contact your local ranger station.
Information provided by Kaibab National Forest.