FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 1, 2011
Campfire restrictions on DNR campgrounds in Okanogan County
Fire Danger increases in Northeast Region
OLYMPIA – Starting September 2, 2011, at 12:01 a.m., the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will increase the fire danger rating from ‘moderate’ to ‘high’ in Ferry and Stevens counties outside of Fire Districts 1 & 2. DNR will also prohibit campfires in all DNR-managed campgrounds in Okanogan County:
- Leader Lake
- Sportsman Campground at Sweat Creek
- Rock Creek Shelter
- Rock Lake – Okanogan County
- Palmer Lake
- Chopaka Lake
- North Fork Nine Mile
- Toats Coulee
- Toats Junction
- Cold Springs
Lincoln, Okanogan, Stevens (inside Fire Districts 1 & 2), and Spokane counties’ fire danger rating will remain ‘high.’ Pend Oreille County fire danger will remain ‘moderate.’
The public is reminded that individual campgrounds may ban campfires on a case-by-case basis; check with the campground host before lighting a campfire.
Motorists should also exercise caution when driving on forest roads by avoiding dry grass and vegetation; hot exhaust systems can easily ignite dry grasses. Recreationists are encouraged to have a shovel, water, and a fire extinguisher available.
Remember, the Discover Pass is needed when camping on DNR land. Learn more at www.discoverpass.wa.gov . For more information about campgrounds on DNR-managed lands, visit www.dnr.wa.gov/recreation .
For daily updates on burn restrictions, call 1-800-323-BURN or visit DNR’s webpage showing fire danger and burning restrictions by county: http://fortress.wa.gov/dnr/firedanger/BurnRisk.aspx .
DNR statewide burn ban
In an effort to reduce preventable wildfires, DNR issued a statewide burn ban covering all DNR-protected lands, effective July 1, 2011, through September 30, 2011. The ban includes all forestlands in Washington except for federal lands. During the ban, designated campgrounds may allow campfires in approved fire pits. DNR or the campground management may put additional restrictions in place, including a ban on campfires, depending on weather conditions.
DNR’s wildfire mission
Administered by Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark, DNR is responsible for fighting wildfires on 12.7 million acres of private, state and tribal-owned forestlands in Washington. DNR is the state’s largest on-call fire department. During fire season, this includes more than 700 DNR employees who have other permanent jobs with the agency and about 375 seasonal workers. DNR participates in Washington’s coordinated interagency approach to firefighting. DNR also has wildfire prevention programs to help people create defensible space around their rural homes and communities, and restrict burning when there is higher wildfire risk.
Janet Pearce, Community Outreach & Education, 360-902-1122, firstname.lastname@example.org
Guy Gifford, Northeast Region, 509-990-6218, email@example.com
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