Campfire and smoking restrictions are in effect as of 8 a.m. on May 22 on the entire Coconino National Forest and on the Williams and Tusayan Ranger Districts of the Kaibab National Forest in order to protect public health and reduce preventable human-caused fires. Restrictions will not yet be implemented on the North Kaibab Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest due to different weather and fuels conditions.
Under the restrictions, fires, campfires, charcoal, coal, and wood stoves are allowed in developed campgrounds only. The restrictions also limit smoking to within enclosed vehicles or buildings or in developed campgrounds. 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 clear of flammable materials.
Implementation of fire restrictions is especially important given the potential for a critical fire weather pattern later this week. The forecast suggests that northern Arizona will be windy, warm and dry throughout the upcoming Memorial Day weekend and that Red Flag Warning conditions are likely to exist in many areas over the coming days.
Criteria used to determine when to implement fire restrictions include current and predicted weather, fuel moisture, fire activity levels and available firefighting resources. Fire restrictions will remain in effect until the forests receive significant precipitation.
For additional information, visit the Coconino and Kaibab websites, www.fs.usda.gov/coconino and www.fs.usda.gov/kaibab. Information on fire restrictions across the state can be found at http://firerestrictions.us/az. For Arizona fire information, visit www.wildlandfire.az.gov.