Controlled training burns in Rochester next week
(ABC 6 News) – During the week of Nov. 6, the Rochester Fire Department and Rochester Parks & Recreation Department will conduct grass/prairie maintenance at Prairie Crossing Park.
The area does not get mowed during the summer months, allowing grass to grow taller and more susceptible to spreading fires. The RFD will take this opportunity to conduct training normally difficult to replicate in a traditional training environment.
Both RFD and Rochester Parks & Rec will monitor the weather and modify schedule as needed.
RFD and Rochester Parks & Rec remind residents that smoke and ash may spread in the air as the controlled burns occur. RFD recommends keeping windows closed if residents spot firefighter activity. According to RFD, these burns do not last long and are safe to manage.
Beyond firefighter training, additional benefits to controlled burns include:
• Warming the soil, increasing microbial activity for new grasses and plants to grow
• Getting rid of some invasive species and insect populations
• Reduce leaf and grass litter that accumulates each year from last year’s growing season, allowing the sunlight to better penetrate
• Reducing the risk of uncontrolled fires