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Crews patrolling Bosque amid increasing fire danger

Brittany Costello
March 17, 2017 10:22 PM

Three Bosque Fires in a matter of weeks cued a red flag for fire officials and a huge danger for those who spend time out there. Despite what's been done in portions of the Bosque in years past, fire crews say at this time they will not close it down.

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It's Mother Nature’s gift; the Bosque is treasured by just about everyone.

“It's got a really nice view of the mountains here,” said Greg Kolb, a resident enjoying the area.

It’s admired for the beautiful Rio Grande, wildlife and vegetation. But the one drawback of all of that is the wildfires that seem to happen every year.

“With the dry conditions we're in we're seeing above average temperatures and lack of moisture right now so things are a lot more susceptible to catch fire and fire growth spread rapidly,” said Lt. Brian Fox, Wildland Division Coordinator with the Albuquerque Fire Department.

Albuquerque fire crews have launched Bosque patrols. That means crews will be out on a daily basis searching for fires and suspicious activity while throughout the year, crews work to reduce the fuel load, by clearing out some of the dead brush.

It's a similar story on the Corrales side where dead brush can be seen just about everywhere. The difference is the resources that they have to respond after those recent fires.

Officials say they don't have the ability, funding or resources to come out and clear fuel simply because of those fires, but it is something they constantly monitor.

Over the past few years, officials with the Corrales Bosque Advisory Commission say they've completed 100 acres of fuel reduction.

“I think Corrales has done a lot to install water outlets along the way. They've cleared out so much dead wood,” said Anji Lang, a Corrales resident that lives right next to the Bosque.

The area behind Lang’s house caught fire a few years back. But with some of the fuel mitigation along with patrols from the volunteer fire patrol Lang says she's not worried.

“We do feel safe,” Lang said.

Crews want people to call if they see anything suspicious. Keep in mind the Bosque is in stage one restrictions which means no smoking, no open flame, no fireworks. It’s finable up to $500 and 90 days in jail.

Credits

Brittany Costello

Copyright 2017 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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