Burned Area Emergency Response Report details long road ahead for Station Fire area

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Lance Harper/KPCC

The Station Fire burned nearly 250 square miles. Now, the burned land must recover.

It’ll be a long road to recovery for the nearly 250 square miles of Angeles National Forest land that burned in the Station Fire. The Burned Area Emergency Response (or BAER) team has provided a roadmap for the recovery.

It spent a couple of weeks surveying environmental damage caused by the Station Fire and what it’ll take to fix it.

Mudslide and debris flow risk is high. That’s a given. But the team found that laying down hydromulch or other material on burned slopes won’t help keep the soil in place, so it’s not worth the cost.

As always, there’s concern about non-native plants and weeds taking over. The team suggests weed surveys and other measures to combat that.

The BAER team found the fire uncovered several archaeological sites that need to be protected from erosion and vandals. Also, old mines might have to be fenced in to keep the public out.

The team is also concerned about off-roaders, hikers, and bikers using the forest even though it's closed, and trampling sensitive land before it recovers. The report suggests hiring people to patrol to try to prevent that.

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