Sequoia Fire Restrictions Go into Effect July 14

Sequoia fire restrictions go into effect Saturday, July 14, 2012, due to the increasing high fire danger.

In response to the increasing potential for a wildland fire start, Sequoia officials have announced fire restrictions in the Sequoia National Forest and the Giant Sequoia National Monument until further notice.  These restrictions will affect the use of campfires, camping stoves, smoking materials and internal combustion engines.

“This year our Forest received well below normal precipitation.  This, in combination with escalating temperatures and low relative humidities, demonstrate our forest fuel moisture is approaching a critical threshold turning the forest into a dry tinderbox.  Everything is in place except a triggered ignition by mother nature, or a visitor,” stated Brent Skaggs, Forest Fire Management Officer.  “Six out of ten wildfires are caused by humans.  Forest visitors need to be vigilant when conditions are bone-dry like this.”

Beginning July 14, 2012, the following forest restrictions will be in effect:

  • Visitors must have a valid California Campfire Permit in their possession for any type of fire use.  (Permits are not required in a developed recreation site or campground.)
  • Prohibited are: wood campfires, charcoal fires and barbecues outside of developed recreation sites and campgrounds.  Welding, or operating an acetylene or other torch with an open flame, or using an explosive are also prohibited.  (Note: persons with a written permit from the Forest Service {other than a campfire permit} specifically authorizing the otherwise prohibited act are exempt from the fire restrictions.)
  • Smoking is prohibited, except within an enclosed vehicle, building, or developed recreation site.
  • Allowed are: lanterns and portable stoves using gas, jellied petroleum or pressurized liquid fuel outside of developed recreation sites or campgrounds, but only with a valid California Campfire Permit (available free of charge).
  • Forest visitors must clear all flammable material five feet in all directions from their camp stove, have a shovel available, and ensure that a responsible person attends the stove at all times when in use.
  • Campfires and barbecue charcoal fires are only allowed in developed recreation sites or campgrounds.
  • Within the Sequoia National Forest and Giant Sequoia National Monument internal combustion engines may be operated only on designated roads and trails.  Make sure your engine is tuned, operating properly and has an approved spark arrester. (This restriction is in effect year-round.)

There are NO EXEMPT AREAS outside of campgrounds or developed recreation sites from the above restrictions within the 1.2 million acre Sequoia National Forest.

These restrictions will remain in place until the end of the fire season, normally in late autumn.  Further restrictions may be imposed if the fire danger increases.  Anyone causing a wildfire could be liable for all costs associated with suppressing the fire.

For a list of campgrounds, or for more information regarding fire-safe camping, contact your nearest Forest Service office.  California Campfire Permits can be found on our website.  For additional information visit our website at:  www.fs.fed.us/r5/sequoia.

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