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Planned burn helps protect Vernon from wildfires

Fuel management in the Foothills this week part of bigger plans
A successful burn took place in the Foothills Thursday, April 7, 2022. (City of Vernon photo)

Significant progress has been made on a wildland fuel management project in the Foothills area of Vernon.

A qualified private contractor conducted a prescribed burn on two parcels of city-owned land Thursday, April 7.

The work is part of a larger fuel management program Vernon Fire Rescue Services is developing across the community, to help reduce the risk of serious wildfire in the wildland urban interface (WUI) and help Vernon become more resilient to wildfire.

“Controlled burning takes a lot of coordination and is entirely weather dependent,” said fire chief David Lind. “We knew we were going to have a small window of opportunity to conduct this work this spring, so we are grateful for the quick and precise work that was done by our contractor. Yesterday, we were able to complete most of our objectives to treat the fine fuels on these two parcels. Not only has this reduced the fire risk for area residents, but it has also helped return the land to a more natural, healthier state.”

Prescribed burning is just one of several tools the city uses to manage fuels in the WUI to help make the community safer.

“Over the last few years, we have put a considerable amount of effort into addressing fuels on city lands by assessing the current condition of various sites, preparing comprehensive treatment plans with a long-term vision of sustainability, and conducting mitigation work when time, funding, and conditions permit,” said Lind.

“We know wildland fires will occur; they are a natural part of our ecosystem,” he continued. “However, these are steps we can take to mitigate the impact in our community and increase safety for residents and firefighters.”

Before the contractor left the site yesterday, the fire was extinguished. Crew members returned to the area Friday, and will come back Saturday and Sunday, to do spot checks and confirm nothing has been reignited.

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Jennifer Smith

About the Author: Jennifer Smith

Vernon has always been my home, and I've been working at The Morning Star since 2004.
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