Prescribed burns planned for land near Oak Ridge

Published 7:31 pm Wednesday, February 3, 2021

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The Tennessee Department of Agriculture Division of Forestry (TDF) is assisting with a series of prescribed burns this week of grasslands on U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Oak Ridge Reservation and Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) Three Bend Area.

These planned burns are part of the TWRA and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s effort to provide wildlife habitat, encourage growth of native plants, and reduce the risk of wildfires. They are conducted and overseen by TDF personnel who maintain fire control equipment, certified burn managers, and trained personnel at the burn area. During burns, distant smoke may be observed in the Oak Ridge vicinity of Clark Center Park or south of the Oak Ridge Institute of Science and Education (ORISE) campus and nearby segments of State Routes 95, 58, and 327, as these take place off Pump House and Bull Bluff Roads, and other managed grassland areas off Bethel Valley Road and off Highway 58.

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Additionally, DOE in collaboration with TDF, TWRA, and the City of Oak Ridge Fire Department will resume proactive installation of firebreaks in forested areas downslope from reservation urban interfaces. These measures are undertaken to reduce the risk of wildfire spread.

The Tennessee Grand Divisions Incident Management Team (GDIMT) is aiding in this effort to manage the multiple operational, logistical, and planning challenges that occur during projects of this scale and complexity. The GDIMT is an all-hazard management team that aids in managing responses to disasters such as wildfire, hurricanes, and various events.