Fire prevention efforts underway ahead of New Mexico's wildfire season | KOB 4

Fire prevention efforts underway ahead of New Mexico's wildfire season

Grace Reader
Updated: January 27, 2021 06:28 PM
Created: January 27, 2021 01:13 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- There’s a fire and ice situation going on in northern New Mexico.

"We’re out here today in the snow and in the sunshine burning them up," said Collin Haffey, forest and watershed health manager for the Nature Conservancy.

Crews are thinning out forests in the northern mountains to help prevent a devastating wildfire. Haffey says controlled burns are even more controlled after it snows.

"Our intent here is to do a little bit of prevention with the fire that we’re putting on the ground to reduce some of that fuel, these smaller trees, and prevent the big catastrophic blowouts like we saw in 2011 with the Los Panchos Fire," he said. 

Large fires disturb more than just the forest.

"The intent there is to restore the forests that protect the water that we all use on a daily basis and that really protects the Rio Grande," Haffey said.

New Mexico fire officials say people can prepare for wildfire season by following these steps:

  • Have an emergency plan in place
  • Take pictures of important documents
  • Sign up for emergency alerts through your county or the FEMA app

 The Nature Conservancy says people can also use this time to make sure they don’t have fuel around their house. 

"You can also do things to move the brush away from your home, to secure your own property," Haffey said. 

Experts expect a busy fire season in 2021.

"We already have our eyes on May, June 2021, in anticipation that it’s going to be pretty dry," Haffey said.

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