Through the establishment of a Wildland Fire Program Office, and the Interagency Fire Base located on Laboratory property, Los Alamos National Laboratory is continuing and improving a program to prepare for wildland fire.
"We're probably in better shape than we've been in the last 20 years," said Manny L'Esperance, Laboratory Wildland Fire Manager. "We've done a considerable amount of work after the Cerro Grande Fire, the Las Conchas Fire. We've been very successful in completing a strategy of defensible space around the Laboratory, around the perimeter as well as around buildings and structures."
In this video, L'Esperance is clear that the fire danger in and around the Laboratory is ever-present, particularly in the dry, summer months.
"We still have some areas, the interior areas, that have not been treated, that are still susceptible to fire, that haven't burned in over 100 years," he said. "However, I think we've reduced the capacity for the fire, for new fire starts, to be the catastrophic-type fires we experienced during Cerro Grande and Las Conchas.