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Prescott National Forest officials to begin debris pile ignitions

Prescribed burn
Melissa Sevigny
Firefighters monitor a fall 2018 prescribed burn on the Gus Pearson Experimental Forest. The long-running experimental site north of Flagstaff was thinned 30 years ago and is burned every four years.

Fire managers on the Prescott National Forest's Bradshaw Ranger District are planning to begin ignitions Wednesday on debris piles in and near the Prescott Basin.

They say crews will take advantage of recent moisture to reduce hazardous fuels near communities in what’s known as the wildland-urban interface, increasing ecosystem and community resilience to wildfires.

Smoke from the work is expected to be light but visible from Prescott, Chino Valley and elsewhere in the area.

Prescribed burns that are carried out in moist environments typically produce less smoke.

Officials urge visitors to obey traffic signs and use caution near prescribed burns and firefighters. Officials expect the work to continue throughout the month.