FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 30, 2013
Commissioner of Public Lands bans all outdoor burning
Recreation fires and prescribed burns banned
OLYMPIA – Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark has banned all outdoor fires on lands protected by the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR).
Hot and dry conditions have made the potential for wildfire unusually high on both sides of the Cascade Mountains. Significant demands are being placed upon our fire suppression resources from both regional and statewide firefighting efforts. This ban is now in effect through September 30 and prohibits campfires in developed campgrounds and other recreational fires. The ban also prohibits prescribed burns.
“Now is the time to be vigilant. It is everyone’s responsibility to be appropriately cautious during this season,” Goldmark said. “The risk of wildfire is unusually high and the consequences could be catastrophic. We have hundreds of firefighters fighting two major wildfires and numerous smaller fires in Washington State. Our resources are stretched thin.”
Wildfires are often ignited by lightning, and this week’s weather forecasts indicate a significant potential for lightning-caused wildfires. Most fires are caused by human activities. Some of the most destructive fire threats to our state’s wildlands and homes in rural areas can be traced to three sources: carelessly tended outdoor fires, indefensible home sites, and sparks caused by equipment or vehicles.
Statewide burn ban
In an effort to reduce human-caused wildfires, DNR has issued a statewide burn ban on all lands under DNR protection, effective through September 30. The ban applies to all forestlands in Washington State, except federal lands, and prohibits campfires in all state, local and private campgrounds.
With fire season upon us, DNR encourages homeowners to take steps to decrease the risk of wildfire destroying their homes. Learn more about Firewise Communities® at www.firewise.org.
Fire safety information
- No campfires are allowed on any land protected by DNR, even in developed campgrounds.
- Be sure recreational vehicles have operating spark arresters.
- Do not park any vehicles in dry, grassy areas as residual heat from exhaust systems can ignite the dry grass.
- It is illegal to discharge fireworks or use incendiary ammunition or exploding targets on DNR-protected lands.
Stay connected during wildfire season
Media Contact: Janet Pearce, Communications Manager, 360-902-1122, email@example.com
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