Ft. Bragg Forestry uses controlled burn method to prevent forest - WNCN: News, Weather

Ft. Bragg Forestry uses controlled burn method to prevent forest fires

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FORT BRAGG, N.C. -

It's a scene that has played out all across the country recently: deadly forest fires destroying acres of land and homes.

Yet although the community is surrounded by thousands of acres of woods in Cumberland County, Fort Bragg has never experienced such an event.

"There hasn't been an extremely bad fire go off base since 1978," said like Fort Bragg Fire Manager Paul Hinkle.

Hinkle said they have hundreds of wildfires a year, but no one ever hears about them. Why?

"You turn the wildfire into a controlled burn," Hinkle said.

The Forestry Team at Fort Bragg is good at managing forest fires and turning them into control burns, but it also helps that it's not as dry here compared to out West.

"The fact that we don't have the Topography and the wind conditions that they have in the West which is partly why we don't have those catastrophic fires that they have elsewhere," said Chief Joe Stancar, Fort Bragg Forestry.

In 2012, the Fort Bragg Forestry branch burned more than 53,000 acres. The branch also posts a daily burn map on its website. Prescribed burns, which are planned fires that mimics natural disturbance for maintaining ecosystem health, are posted each day before 10 a.m.

To learn more about the Fort Bragg Forestry branch, click here.

Phil Sanchez

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