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Controlled burn near Los Alamos putting up smoke Tuesday through Thursday

A 550 acre prescribed burn near Los Alamos will last for the next three days, putting up a large plume. (Photo: Drea O'Connell)

LOS ALAMOS, Calif. - A three day controlled burn east of Los Alamos near Highway 101 started early Tuesday morning, prompting concerns from passing motorists and nearby residents.

The planned burn encompasses roughly 557 acres of Oak Woodland, Chaparral and Sage Scrub on Bar M (also known as Barham) Ranch, about four miles southeast of Los Alamos.

Santa Barbara County fire Public Information Officer Daniel Bertucelli confirmed that the burning will occur on three consecutive days as conditions allow; each day, the burning will begin at approximately 8 a.m. and conclude by 6 p.m. on a permissive burn day, to reduce the risk of wildfire.

The Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District (APCD), and the California Air Resources Board are also overseeing the prescribed burn, in order to minimize impacts on air quality on surrounding communities.

Health officials wants to remind people that if you are sensitive to smoke and can smell it, consider closing all doors and windows on the day of the burn. Symptoms of smoke exposure can include coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, chest tightness or pain, nausea, and unusual fatigue or lightheadedness. Use caution when driving near prescribed burns.

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