By NYLA HUGHES
Capital News Service
LASNING — A team of researchers has developed a way to predict which way smoke will drift away from low-intensity forest fires. Researchers at Michigan State University and the U.S Forest Service developed the system to help fire managers control prescribed fires. These fires are used to manage vegetation and fuel, said Warren Heilman, a research meteorologist for the Forest Service based in East Lansing. “If there is a lot of flammable vegetation on the ground, the surface can catch on fire from lightning,” said Heilman. “This increases the chance of a wildfire.