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Tahoe Douglas Fire News

Smoke in the Lake Tahoe Basin

Smoke in the Lake Tahoe Basin

Can smoke in the Basin be a good thing?
Yes! When it's a prescribed burn.

In early November, our Tahoe Fire and Fuels (TFFT) team began conducting prescribed fire operations in the Lake Tahoe Basin weather and conditions permitting.

Fall and winter bring cooler temperatures and precipitation, which are ideal for conducting prescribed fire operations. Each operation follows a specialized prescribed fire burn plan, which considers temperature, humidity, wind, moisture of the vegetation, and conditions for the dispersal of smoke. All of this information is used to decide when and where to burn.

Prescribed fire managers use different methods to reintroduce fire back into our forests that include pile burning and understory burning.

Pile burning is intended to remove excess fuels (branches, limbs, and stumps) that can feed unwanted wildfires and involves burning slash piles that are constructed by hand and mechanical equipment.

Smoke from prescribed fire operations is normal and may continue for several days after an ignition but less intense and shorter duration than smoke produced by wildland fires.

Agencies work closely with local, county, and state air pollution control districts and monitor weather conditions carefully before prescribed fire starts. Wait for favorable conditions to carry smoke up and disperse it away from sensitive areas.

The agencies post road signs around areas affected by prescribed fire, and email notifications are sent out to the community. The TFFT gives advance notice before burning, but some operations may be conducted on short notice due to the small window of opportunity to conduct these events.

Smoke may be visible. Check out the latest map of the prescribed fire locations and details. 

Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to receive email notification of prescribed fire. 
USDA Forest Service at 530.543.2816
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