ST. GEORGE —The Central/New Harmony fuelbreak project began Thursday. The aerial seeding portion of the project is carried out using a helicopter to apply seed in four different locations: the Central fuelbreak, the New Harmony fuelbreak, the Bull Mountain Fire and the Basin Fire areas. Aerial seeding is expected to be completed Friday.
The intent behind the seeding is to foster a more fire resilient landscape in the areas where it is applied. The seed is custom mixed for the site of application, but in each case the intent is to reduce the spread of cheatgrass into these areas.
Vegetation removal is complete in the Central fuelbreak, and is underway in New Harmony. The New Harmony fuelbreak vegetation removal is expected to be completed near the end of May 2015.
The purpose of the fuelbreak project is to remove heavy concentrations of fuel on Forest Service land to decrease fire behavior in the event that a wildfire is threatening the communities of Central and New Harmony. The vegetation removal phase of the project will be performed by heavy equipment (mastication) and chain saws (thin and pile). Some hand piles will be created and burned at a later date.
“Creating a more robust fuelbreak around the communities of Central and New Harmony will allow firefighters to safely and more aggressively fight fire threatening these communities.” Skeet Houston, the Pine Valley Ranger District assistant fire management officer in charge of fuels treatments, said.
The seed will also be applied to two fire areas that occurred this past fire season. This is part of a burned area emergency rehab effort to rehabilitate areas affected by fire and to help the areas become more fire resilient in the future.
- Pine Valley Ranger District | Telephone 435-652-3100 | USFS Web page for the district
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