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Reading Fire now 100% contained

Feather Publishing
8/23/2012

This will be the last fire update from California Interagency Incident Management Team 3.

Crews will continueto take a series of post-fire actions to repair damages and minimize environmental impacts resulting from fire suppression activities, and continue to patrol the firelines and mop up any remaining hot spots. There are 3 phases of rehabilitation; fire suppression repair, BAER (Burn Area Emergency Response) and long term recovery.

Fire Suppression Repair is a series of immediate post-fire actions taken to repair damages and minimize environmental impacts resulting from fire suppression activities and is usually began after the fire is contained and before the demobilization of an Incident Management Team. This work rehabilitates the hand and dozer firelines, roads, trails, staging areas, safety zones, and drop points used during fire suppression efforts.

BAER -The Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) program is a rapid assessment of burned watersheds by BAER teams to identify unacceptable post-fire threats and implement emergency treatments to reduce unacceptable risks before the first major storm or damaging event. The fire results in a loss of vegetation, exposure of the soil to erosion and increased water runoff that may lead to flooding and increased sediment and debris flows. BAER treatments such as the installation of erosion and runoff water control devices; temporary barriers to protect recovering areas; warning signs; and drainage features for increased flow may be implemented. BAER work may also replace safety related facilities; remove safety hazards; prevent permanent loss of habitat for threatened and endangered species; and prevent the spread of noxious weeds.

Long-Term Recovery utilizes non-emergency actions that are done within three years or more after fire containment to improve fire-damaged lands that are unlikely to recover naturally and to repair or replace facilities damaged by the fire that are not critical to life safety. This phase may include restoring burned habitat, monitoring fire effects, replacing burned fences, interpreting cultural sites, treating pre-existing noxious weed infestations, and installing interpretive signs.

During a wildfire, most wildlife will be able to escape from harm's way. Animals such as birds, deer, coyote, bobcat and mountain lions may be able to move out of burning areas. Smaller wildlife such as rodents and reptiles can often find refuge underground and in unburned patches of vegetation or rocky areas. However, some individuals may be lost depending on intensity and how rapidly fire moves through an area. Intense fires that spread rapidly may have incidental losses to fleeing animals, but may be less hazardous to wildlife seeking refuge in the ground. Moderate slow moving fires may allow large mammals to escape more easily, but slow moving flames allow the heat to penetrate the soil which can have an impact on smaller wildlife.

Visitors wanting to access Lassen National Volcanic Park from the north can drive the Lassen Volcanic National Park Highway from the north entrance to Manzanita Lake. For visitors wanting to access the park from the south entrance, the road is open to Summit Lake. Visitors are encouraged to call ahead for current information. The park's most popular trails remain open. From the Southwest entrance, visitors can access the Bumpass Hell trail, Kings Creek Falls trail, Mill Creek Falls, and Brokeoff Mountain trail among others. Warner Valley offers visitors an opportunity to hike several trails including the trails to Devils Kitchen and Boiling Springs Lake, two of the park's hydrothermal areas. The Lassen Peak trail will be open to the summit Friday August 31 through Monday September 3. Visitors can enjoy a spectacular full moon hike up the peak on August 31. The trails around Manzanita Lake, Lily Pond, Crags Lake and Manzanita Creek are open in the northwest part of the park. The Pacific Crest Trail is closed.

The Lassen National Forest and Lassen Volcanic National Park are working together and providing a coordinated response to the fire. Smoke will continue to pose health concerns for the public. Residents are encouraged to visit the "Protect Yourself from Smoke" website for smoke protection information at http://www.cdc.gov/Features/Wildfires/. Local air quality conditions and forecasts are available at http://airnow.gov/index.cfm action=airnow.main.

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