The Arizona Department of Transportation has been doing its part in helping to prevent wildfires both before and during wildfire season.
During the winter and spring seasons, ADOT crews mow down vegetation along the highway shoulders. Crews also engage in brush removal, thinning trees and spraying fire retardant within the ADOT right-of-way in order to prevent a fire or slow the spread of one.
During a wildfire, ADOT supports firefighting efforts by offering the use of ADOT maintenance crew water trucks to help supply water to firefighters. ADOT also manages traffic control along highways affected by wildfires, and notifies the motorists through overhead and portable message boards, and alerts posted at az511.gov.
After a wildfire has been extinguished, ADOT crews assess any damage done to the highway as well as adjacent areas. As seen recently in Oak Creek Canyon with the aftermath of the Slide fire, crews help curb flooding hazards by staging heavy equipment such as road graders and repair roadway embankments along burned out slopes within ADOT’s right of way in an effort to restore vegetation.
ADOT crews also place erosion control features such as logs, rock dams and “wattles” — straw-filled canvas tubes that help keep the soil and debris off highways — along the right of way in preparation for potential flooding.