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Firefighters are lighting a controlled burn next to Lake Roosevelt's Haag Cove near Kettle Falls this morning.About 20 National Park Service firefighters--with help from other federal firefighters—are introducing fire into about 30 acres of timbered parkland, so that flames will consume grass, brush, pine needle litter, and down timber.
"We are starting this prescribed fire to reduce the fire danger in a controlled situation.We'd rather not wait for the possibility of fighting a wildfire at Haag Cove in the heat of summer when the risks to life and property are much higher," said Dee Townsend, Fire Management Officer for Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area.
People in Kettle Falls and anyone driving the Inchelium Highway, Highway 20 or Highway 25 are likely to see smoke.Smoke may also be visible across the lake from Kettle Falls.
Travel on the road into Haag Cove may be restricted while the firefighters are igniting the prescribed fire.
The Haag Cove prescribed fire is next to private property and the National Park Service's Haag Cove Campground.The campground will remain open, but smoke will probably linger in the area for a few days.The firefighters' main focus will be to protect structures.
Firefighters are from the National Park Service, the U.S. Forest Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The Prineville Hotshot Crew out of Oregon is also in the area, helping several agencies with prescribed burns. The National Park Service's Whiskeytown Fire Module is enroute from California to help local fire crews over the next few weeks
Depending on weather, National Park Service crews may also light off another prescribed burn approximately one mile south of the park's Lake Roosevelt National District Office in Kettle Falls over the weekend.�!�