The BC Wildfire Service (BCWS) will be undertaking a prescribed fire this May, with Burns Lake Community Forest (BL ComFor) as part of their wildfire mitigation activity.
Starting as early as May 5, BCWS and BL ComFor will be undertaking a planned burn with support from Shifting Mosaics Consulting and Northern Fire WoRx for four identified fire units totalling 675 hectares.
The four prescribed fire units (PFU) are located south of Burns Lake on the west side of Highway 35. The first PFU is approximately 225 hectares and the targeted priority unit for Spring 2021 ignition. PFU two (150ha),PFU three (190ha) and PFU four (110ha) will be targeted in Fall 2021.
In a news release issued by the BCWS, they said that “Applying prescribed fire to these areas will remove residual slash left over after harvesting and reduce fuel load that, in the event of a wildfire, could lead to more intense fire behaviour and added difficulty and danger to suppression efforts.”
The release also specified that any fuels that were able to be utilized by the pellet plant have already been transported off location.
Some of the benefits of having a prescribed burn like this include improving access to some sections for replanting, improving ecological health and balance, as well as allowing land managers to practice good stewardship for present and future natural resource management.
Earlier last month, the BCWS and BL ComFor had started undertaking pile burning activity in the Burns Lake area, and in and around the District of Houston. BCWS also issued a notice on April 26 for Houston and surrounding areas after increased wind had led to increased fire and smoke activity on a prescribed fire near the community.
The Any burning will only take place depending on appropriate weather conditions to allow for smoke dispersal and the BCWS crew will constantly monitor the conditions and the fire.
In the event that the prescribed fire does take place, Burns Lake residents might see smoke.
To report a wildfire, unattended campfire or open burning violation, call 1-800-663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cell phone.