Fire restrictions to be implemented Friday for Coconino and Kaibab National Forests due to lack of rain
FLAGSTAFF, WILLIAMS , Ariz., Aug. 10, 2020 — Due to lack of monsoon precipitation and key criteria being met for restrictions, the Coconino and Kaibab national forests will enter Stage 1 campfire and smoking restrictions Friday (Aug. 14) at 8 a.m. The goal of the fire restrictions is to protect public health by reducing the number of preventable human-caused wildfires.
Under the restrictions, fires, campfires, charcoal, coal and wood stoves are prohibited, except within a developed recreation site. Smoking is also prohibited, except within an enclosed vehicle, building or a developed recreation site. Using a device that is solely fueled by liquid petroleum or LPG fuels that can be turned on and off is allowed in areas that are barren or cleared of all overhead and surrounding flammable materials within three feet of the device. Fireworks are always prohibited on all national forest lands.
Fire officials acknowledge it is rare for restrictions to be applied twice in the same year, however these decisions are based on a combination of factors that are carefully measured. Criteria used to determine when to implement restrictions include things such as current and predicted weather, fuel moisture, a variety of science-based indices, fire activity levels and available firefighting resources.
Fire restrictions are implemented to help prevent unwanted, human-caused fires and to limit the exposure of visitors during periods of potentially dangerous fire conditions. With no significant moisture predicted in the long term forecast, additional restrictions may be applied at any time conditions warrant which could include Stage 2 Fire Restrictions and additional closure areas as needed. Fire restrictions typically remain in effect until the area covered by the restrictions receives significant precipitation, at which time they will be rescinded.
An explanation of the different stages of fire restrictions and what is typically prohibited during those stages can be found online at www.tinyurl.com/firestagesexplained.
The Kaibab National Forest will also temporarily close the Bill Williams Mountain watershed just southwest of the City of Williams due to the area's susceptibility to uncharacteristically severe wildfire and post-wildfire flooding that could result.
There will be a modified boundary of this closure area on the south side of the mountain reducing the southern closure boundary from FR108 north to FR122.
Forest officials would also like to remind visitors that having a campfire on the national forest while under fire restrictions is a violation that can carry a mandatory appearance in federal court. Visitors should use extra caution when recreating on all public lands during fire season.
Know Before You Go! The public can obtain additional fire information via the following:
<![if !supportLists]>· <![endif]>Fire Restrictions on Public Lands in Arizona and New Mexico - 1-877-864-6985
<![if !supportLists]>· <![endif]>Coconino National Forest - www.coconinonationalforest.us
<![if !supportLists]>· <![endif]>Kaibab National Forest - www.fs.usda.gov/kaibab
<![if !supportLists]>· <![endif]>Arizona Fire Restrictions: https://firerestrictions.us/az/
<![if !supportLists]>· <![endif]>Arizona Interagency Wildfire Prevention and Information Website - www.wildlandfire.az.gov/
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