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News Release

Burn Area Emergency Response Process Begins on High Park Fire

NRCS Colorado 2012 News Release       

For Immediate Release   Petra Barnes Walker  
State Public Information Officer  
Office Number: 720-544-2808   
Fax Number: 720-544-2965  

July 10, 2012


Petra Barnes Walker, NRCS, 720-544-2808
Tammy Williams, USFS, 970-295-6693
Ashley Mohr, CDOT, 303-757-9437
Deni La Rue, Larimer County, 970-498-7150

Ft. Collins
- An interagency Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team has begun gathering information and conducting field observations to determine how to reduce the impacts from the High Park Fire. The team is comprised of resource specialists from the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Larimer County, Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS).

Wildfire increases the risk of flooding, erosion and sedimentation, debris flow, and reduced water quality following the burn. BAER teams consider potential immediate post-fire impacts to human life and safety, property, cultural and natural resources. They recommend actions to address prioritized concerns. The USFS is responsible for addressing concerns on National Forest System lands and the NRCS has an equivalent authority to address concerns on non-Federal lands. Typical actions a BAER team considers include mulching, installation of water control devices such as culverts or water bars, area closures, and/or placing warning signage. The team does not work on replacing losses of improvements due to fire.

Resource specialists, including hydrologists, soil scientists, archeologists, engineers, biologists, recreation specialists, and others, conduct a rapid assessment of resource conditions affected by the fire.

BAER teams move fairly quickly in developing an assessment. The team plans to complete a report by Friday, July 13. Findings will be shared with affected parties and the public the following week. The team will meet with affected parties, including water providers, and residents within the burned area, to discuss their concerns, and let them know how the team operates.

Please continue to check for the latest information on the fire and updates on BAER activities.