PRINEVILLE, Ore. - Where there's fire, there's smoke - and if you are in Central Oregon on Wednesday, you can expect to see smoke over the Coyote Hills.
The fire is a prescribed burn planned for 90 acres of the Crooked River National Grassland, part of a larger 1,500-acre project intended to improve the health of native plants, restore spring flow and increase forage for wildlife and livestock by using prescribed fire to reduce the number of western juniper on the landscape.
Firefighters from the Ochoco National Forest with experience in prescribed burning will conduct the operation.
The area around the burn will be signed to inform motorists of the prescribed fire activities.
No road closures are anticipated; however, people recreating in or traveling through the area should use caution as smoke may affect visibility and travel.
If motorists encounter smoke as a result of the burning, they should slow down, turn on headlights, and proceed with care. The burn is expected to take one day to complete. Patrols and mop-up activities will occur during and following ignitions.
Fuels specialists will follow policies outlined in the Oregon Department of Forestry smoke management plan, which governs controlled burns, and attempts to minimize impacts to visibility and public health.
These kinds of burns are weather dependent and may be cancelled if conditions are not appropriate to complete the burn successfully.
For more information, visit the Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch Center website.