PORTLAND, Ore. (July 27, 2019) — As July 4th and the Independence Day holiday approaches, fire officials remind visitors that fireworks and exploding targets are prohibited on public lands.
“With warm and dry conditions, all it takes is one small spark to start a wildfire,” Glenn Casamassa, regional forester for the USDA Forest Service – Pacific Northwest Region, said. “Please be safe and responsible with fire when visiting your public lands this summer!”
Fireworks are banned on national forests at all times, regardless of weather or conditions. Fireworks are also prohibited on other public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, Oregon State Parks, and Washington State Parks, as well as most county and city parks.
Violators can be subject to a maximum penalty of a $5,000 fine and/or up to six months in jail (36 CFR 261.52). Additionally, anyone who starts a wildfire can be held liable for the cost of fighting the fire.
Visitors are also encouraged to practice campfire safety as unattended campfires are the number one source of human-caused wildfires on public land.
If you are planning to have a campfire, remember:
- First, check with the local unit and know before you go whether campfires are allowed in the area you are visiting. Fire restrictions may be in place, depending on current conditions.
- Keep your campfire small and away from flammable material.
- Use a designated campfire ring when available.
- Keep water and shovel nearby.
- Completely extinguish your campfire by drowning your fire with water and stirring with a shovel.
- Make sure your campfire is cold to the touch before leaving it.
Nationally, nearly nine out of ten wildfires are human-caused due to sparks from debris burning, equipment and machinery, campfires, vehicles, and other sources.
Visit www.SmokeyBear.com for additional fire prevention information and resources.
Source information: USDA Forest Service – Pacific Northwest Region (press release)