Making sense of fire restrictions
VALLEY – It is no secret that this has been an exceptionally dry year, and as a result this year has potential to bring a higher than usual number of wildfires. Local authorities around the Valley have joined others throughout the state in enacting restrictions on actions that may start accidental fires this season. Some have imposed Stage 1, others Stage 2. But what does that mean?
Jurisdictions (counties, towns, federal agencies) use specific language when they enact restriction ordinances, so it is best to check directly with the applicable authority to get specific details. For example, they may add specific restrictions on fireworks but still allow for community fireworks displays. However, for a basic understanding about what the different stages mean, read on.
Stage 1 restrictions usually mean that the following are generally prohibited where fire restrictions have been established:
1. Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire or campfire except a fire within a permanent constructed fire grate in a developed campground
2. Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials
3. Open burning of any kind to include: trash barrels, yard waste or debris and agricultural burning except where permitted
4. The sale and or use of fireworks except where permitted by jurisdictional authority
Stage 2 restrictions generally mean that following acts are prohibited where fire restrictions have been established:
1. Building maintaining, attending, or using a fire or campfire
2. Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building
3. Operating a chainsaw or motorized equipment without an approved spark arresting device installed
4. Blasting, welding, or other activities which generated flame or flammable material
5. Open burning of any kind to include: trash barrels, yard waste or debris and agricultural burning.
6. The sale and or use of fireworks except where permitted by jurisdictional authority.