Stage 2 Fire Restrictions Effective June 15th
San Juan National Forest and partners implement fire restrictions due to critical conditions
Durango, Colo., June 14, 2022— Based on recent wildfire activity and persistent severe fire weather conditions, the San Juan National Forest (SJNF) will implement forest-wide Stage 2 fire restrictions at 12:01 a.m. June 15, per Forest Order SJNF-2022-08, to reduce the risk of human-caused wildfires. Stage 1 fire restrictions went into effect on May 20, 2022. Forest managers use several criteria to determine when to implement restrictions, including current and predicted weather, fuel moisture, fire activity levels and available firefighting resources.
Stage 2 fire restrictions prohibit the following activities on the SJNF:
1) Igniting, building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, including fires in developed recreation sites
(campgrounds and picnic areas), charcoal grills and barbecues, coal and wood burning stoves, and
sheepherder’s stoves. 36 CFR § 261.52(a).
2) Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle, trailer, or building. 36 CFR § 261.52(c).
3) Blasting, welding, or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame. 36 CFR § 261.52(i).
4) Operating or using any internal combustion engine without an effective and properly installed USDA-or Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE)- approved spark arrestor. 36 CFR § 261.52(j).
5) Operating a chainsaw without an effective and properly installed USDA- or SAE- approved spark arrestor, a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher (with a minimum of 8 oz. capacity and rating of 2A) kept with the operator and a round point shovel with an overall length of at least 35 inches readily available for use. 36 CFR § 261.52(h).
6) Using an explosive. This includes but is not limited to fuses, blasting caps, fireworks, rockets, exploding
targets, tracers, and incendiary ammunition. 36 CFR § 261.52(b).
7) Possessing or using a motor vehicle off established roads, motorized trails or established parking areas,
except when parking in an area devoid of vegetation within 10 feet of the vehicle. 36 CFR § 261.56.
Visitors may use stoves, grills and lanterns fueled by propane or other liquid petroleum gas (LPG) fuels that meet manufacturer’s safety specifications. If you plan to visit the forest, be sure to practice One Less Spark vehicle safety guidelines by securing chains, checking tire pressure and properly maintaining your brakes.
Stage 2 fire restrictions are a proactive way to reduce the risk of human-caused wildfires, protect natural and cultural resources, and enhance public and firefighter safety. Forest visitors are asked to use extreme caution when fire restrictions are in place. Violations are punishable as a Class B misdemeanor by a fine of not more than $5,000 for individuals and $10,000 for organizations and/or by imprisonment for not more than six months. The fire restrictions are in place until Dec. 31, 2022, unless rescinded earlier.
Federal, state and local officers and members of an organized rescue team or firefighting force are exempt from the closure order. Neighboring federal, state, and local fire managers have also entered fire restrictions. We work closely with our partners in fire prevention to reduce the risk of human-caused wildfires across the landscape. Visit the Rocky Mountain Area Coordination Center fire restrictions page and know before you go. Almost 90% of all wildfires on public lands are started by humans. It is every forest visitor’s responsibility to recreate responsibly and follow best practices. To report a fire call 9-1-1.
For information on current fire restrictions, conditions, and recreation opportunities on the San Juan National Forest, call (970) 247-4874, visit the forest website, or follow us on social media (Twitter and Facebook).
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