Juniper Flat Fire Safe Council completes fuel reduction project

MT. SHASTA, Ca. — The Juniper Flat Fire Safe Council recently completed a fuel reduction project following last year’s Lava Fire.

The council says the project will help protect firefighters as well as the community during evacuation from future fires.

The facilitator of the group, Marjorie King, says the burned area from the lava fire is around 10% of the Mt. Shasta Vista Subdivision.

She says most of the remaining area hasn’t burned in more than 100 years, meaning there remains a high-risk situation with a heavy fuel load.

King says the council helped reduce the flammable objects by using a technique called shaded fuel breaks, which separates dry fuels.

“It will burn along the ground and burn out those fast-growing brush and so on, but it will not get up into the crowns of the trees. For junipers, the crown of the tree is where the nightmare happens. It produces a lot of heat and smoke and spreads very rapidly,” King said.

King says the reduction work also improves the soil in the area since the loose branches are turned into chips and laid back out along the roads.

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