VALLES CALDERA News:
JEMEZ SPRINGS – Valles Caldera National Preserve initiated prescribed burn projects beginning last Thursday and may continue over the next couple of weeks, dependent upon suitable weather and fuel conditions.
The prescribed burns are taking place within a 630-acre project area in Banco Bonito and a 112-acre area on Cerro Seco. Both locations are within the western half of the preserve.
The burn operations will be completed within a 3- to 10-day period. Brief traffic delays may occur during this time but are not expected to cause road closures or disrupt visitor activities elsewhere on the preserve.
The parameters for implementing a prescribed burn are based upon specific assessments, agency guidelines, and safety protocols. Managers continuously monitor weather conditions during a burn including wind, temperature, and relative humidity. Fuel quantity and moisture also are measured.
The project will not begin unless all conditions support the burn and associated resources are available. If conditions are not right, the burn may be postponed.
Because of the location and elevation, smoke from the burn may be visible from all directions coming into the Jemez Mountains area. Smoke can linger for a few days after the burn and can be a nuisance to some people. It may be a health concern for children, pregnant women, senior citizens, and those suffering from allergies, asthma, chemical sensitivities or other heart or lung diseases.
To reduce exposure to smoke, stay indoors as much as possible with windows, doors and vents closed. Avoid or limit physical activities outdoors.
Information on health impacts from smoke can be found by calling the New Mexico Department of Health at 1.888.878.8992 or by visiting https://nmtracking.org/fire.