Prescribed Burn Planned for the week of Feb 25 – March 1st at Cedar Hill State Park

Filed under: City |

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department staff plans to conduct a prescribed burn at Cedar Hill State Park sometime during the months of February through March. The burn is expected to be conducted and completed in one to two days.

Prescribed burns are used as a management tool in state parks to improve habitat for wildlife by restoring forest and prairie habitats on the park that were historically maintained by natural fires. They also are conducted to reduce the amount of available fuels, such as leaf litter, fallen branches, understory growth and dead trees that accumulate naturally and from storm events. By reducing the amount of available fuels, prescribed burns reduce the chance for a potentially destructive wildfire to occur.

prescribed burning 2Park staff already has begun preparing for the upcoming burn by clearing vegetation and other fuels from the fire breaks established around the perimeter of each area (burn unit) that will be burned this year. Fuels and vegetation also are cleared away from utility poles, structures, signs and sensitive resources to protect them during the prescribed burns.

Prescribed burns on state parks are conducted by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department personnel who have undergone training and met national wildland firefighting certification standards. The park’s prescribed fire plan defines the conditions under which a prescribed burn may be conducted, taking into account wind speeds and direction, air temperature, relative humidity, and fuel moisture levels. The plan also guides the fire crew members in managing burns to prevent them from escaping into adjacent properties and to minimize the effect of smoke in nearby residential areas.

Because specific weather conditions are required to conduct an effective and safe prescribed burn, TPWD staff cannot provide a specific date for the burn at this time. However, local emergency management officials will be notified before the prescribed fire is implemented. Superintendent Spradling stated that during the burn, some areas of the park would be closed to the public. During the burn there may be smoke that reduces visibility on neighboring roads and Superintendent Spradling cautions travelers to reduce their speed and use their headlights when smoke is present.

For more information regarding the planned burn or to request notification on the days when fires are ignited, please contact the park at 972-291-3900 or by e-mail Joshua.Choate@tpwd.state.tx.us .