BLM Alaska Fire Service, U.S. Army To Burn Debris Piles on Military Lands

File photo of burn piles on Fort Wainwright near Badger Gate in 2013Oct. 5, 2016 (FAIRBANKS, Alaska) – The U. S. Army Alaska, in cooperation with the Bureau of Land Management Alaska Fire Service, will be burning piles of woody debris created this summer during hazardous fuels reduction projects on the Fort Wainwright main post and Yukon Training Area (YTA). Burning operations may start as early on Saturday, Oct. 8 and will continue, as conditions allow, until Oct. 31.

Some of the piles are located on the section of Birch Hill that lies on the Fort Wainwright main post. The piles in the YTA are scattered throughout areas north and east of Eielson Air Force Base. These piles were created during hazardous fuels reduction projects conducted by BLM AFS hand crews to remove dead and decaying vegetation and black spruce in an effort to reduce the chances of a wildfire on military lands.

The piles will be ignited when weather conditions are favorable and winds are predicted to direct the smoke away from populated areas. The BLM AFS and USARAK only conduct prescribed fires when precise weather conditions and site prescriptions are met and an approved burn plan is in place that includes a burn permit approved by the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (ADEC).

The BLM AFS and USARAK are working with the ADEC and the National Weather Service to monitor smoke conditions and air quality during the planning phase to ensure compliance with local, state, and federal policies and regulations governing air quality.

For more information about the prescribed fire on Fort Wainwright lands, contact the BLM AFS dispatch in Fairbanks at (907)356-5554.

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About BLM Alaska Fire Service

The Bureau of Land Management Alaska Fire Service (AFS) located at Fort Wainwright, Alaska, provides wildland fire suppression services for over 244 million acres of Department of the Interior and Native Corporation Lands in Alaska. In addition, AFS has other statewide responsibilities that include: interpretation of fire management policy; oversight of the BLM Alaska Aviation program; fuels management projects; and operating and maintaining advanced communication and computer systems such as the Alaska Lightning Detection System. AFS also maintains a National Incident Support Cache with a $10 million inventory. The Alaska Fire Service provides wildland fire suppression services for America’s “Last Frontier” on an interagency basis with the State of Alaska Department of Natural Resources, USDA Forest Service, National Park Service, Bureau of Indian Affairs, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the U.S. Military in Alaska.

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