Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District Plans Prescribed Burning One and a Half Miles West of Sunriver Thursday

Sunriver, Ore – On Thursday firefighters on the Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District plan to conduct prescribed burn operations on up to 269 acres approximately one and a half miles west of Sunriver along Forest Service Road 41 near the access for Besson Day Use Area.

Ignitions on the West Maintenance 5D Prescribed Burn are planned for 10 a.m. Smoke will be visible from Sunriver, La Pine, Bend and Highway 97. Areas adjacent to the prescribed burn, including communities on the west side of Sunriver could experience smoke impacts overnight and in the early morning hours. Residents in Sunriver and the surrounding area are encouraged to keep doors and windows closed to decrease smoke impacts.

While no road or trail closures are anticipated, there may be some short delays along Forest Service Road 41 during operations. The public is asked to use caution and slow down where fire traffic and firefighters are present.

Prescribed burning reintroduces and maintains fire within a fire-dependent ecosystem helping to stabilize and improve the resiliency of forest conditions while increasing public and firefighter safety. Once firefighters ignite prescribed burns, they patrol the units until they declare the burn out. This prescribed burn is being implemented with support from participants in the Central Oregon Prescribed Fire Training Exchange (TREX) program.

This prescribed burn is occurring within the Central Oregon Landscape, one of 21 focal landscapes identified within the Forest Service’s Wildfire Crisis Strategy. The implementation of this prescribed burn supports the Deschutes National Forest’s commitment to addressing the Wildfire Crisis Strategy which aims to reduce severity of wildfires, protect communities, and improve the health and resiliency of fire-dependent forests.

Prescribed burns can protect homes from tragic wildfires. Fire management officials work with Oregon Department of Forestry smoke specialists to plan prescribed burns. Prescribed burns are conducted when weather is most likely to move smoke up and away from our communities. While prescribed fire managers take significant preventive measures, it’s likely that communities may experience some smoke during or immediately after a prescribed burn. 

What does this mean for you?

During prescribed burns, smoke may settle in low-lying areas overnight.

  • All residents are encouraged to close windows at night to avoid smoke impacts
  • When driving in smoky areas, drivers should slow down, turn on headlights and turn air to recirculating
  • If you have heart or lung disease, asthma, or other chronic conditions, ask your doctor about how to protect yourself from smoke
  • Go to centraloregonfire.org to learn more about smoke safety and prescribed burning in Central Oregon

For more information on prescribed burning in Central Oregon, visit centraloregonfire.org/ and for information specific to the Deschutes National Forest visit www.fs.usda.gov/deschutes. Follow us on X/Twitter @CentralORFire. Text “COFIRE” to 888-777 to receive wildfire and prescribed fire text alerts.


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