Burn ban archives for: Douglas County

DNR eases campfire restrictions after rains

Other outdoor burning still prohibited due to continuing high fire danger

OLYMPIA – With rain and cooler temperatures easing fire danger across Washington, the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is lifting restrictions on recreational campfires.

Effective 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 20, campfires will be allowed in approved fire pits in designated campgrounds Washington lands protected by DNR.

Because forests and rangelands remain dry from the summer’s low precipitation totals, other forms of outdoor burning, such as debris burning, remain prohibited under the burn ban ordered by Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz.

“We’re thankful to have rain help wet our landscapes, but as we saw with a quick-moving fire east of Ellensburg Sunday evening, we’re not out of fire season quite yet,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz. “I urge everyone to check with their local authorities before lighting campfires.”

Check local restrictions

Counties and local fire districts may have their own continued campfire bans. Burn restrictions on federally-owned lands, such as national forests, national parks, national wildlife refuges or other areas are administered by federal agencies. Check local restrictions, campground signs or with campground hosts before starting a campfire.

For current information on burn restrictions, call 1-800-323-BURN or visit DNR’s webpage showing fire danger and burning restrictions by county: www.dnr.wa.gov/burn-restrictions.

Those choosing to have a campfire in allowed areas should:

  • Use an approved or provided fire pit only; don’t create a new one.
  • Keep the campfire small.
  • Keep plenty of water and a shovel nearby.
  • Never leave the campfire unattended.
  • To extinguish a campfire: drown with water, mix ashes, scrape partially-burned sticks and logs, and alternate drowning and mixing until cold. A campfire too hot to touch, is too hot to leave.

 More than 90 percent of Washington’s wildfires this year have been human-caused. As of Sept. 19, 2017, DNR has responded to 745 wildfires this year. Here is a year-to-date comparison of the last 5 years:

  • 2012 – 671 fires for 67,455 acres
  • 2013 – 722 fires for 126,027 acres
  • 2014 – 808 fires for 314,565 acres
  • 2015 – 953 fires for 753,104 acres
  • 2016 – 766 fires for 16,403 acres

Escaped and abandoned campfires are one of the state’s leading causes of wildfires, with an average of 105 fires started by campfires over the past five years. Washington also sees an average of 140 fires started by debris burning every year.

DNR’s wildfire mission

Administered by Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz, DNR is responsible for preventing and fighting wildfires on 13 million acres of private, state and tribal-owned forestlands. DNR is the state’s largest on-call fire department and participates in Washington’s coordinated interagency approach to firefighting.

 

USFS Campfire Restrictions Expanded and Woodcutting Suspended

Shared from USFS – Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest.

Due to worsening fire conditions and continued hot and dry weather, expanded campfire restrictions will go into effect on August 4, 2017

Under the expanded campfire restrictions, maintaining, attending, or using a fire or campfire, and use of charcoal briquette barbecues, Tiki torches, and other devices that use solid fuel is prohibited across most of the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest. Campfires will continue to be allowed on the Naches Ranger District but only in designated hosted campgrounds, and in the Goat Rocks, Norse Peak and William O. Douglas Wilderness areas due to the difference in geography and weather patterns in these wilderness areas.

“Fire danger continues to increase, and with the very hot and dry conditions expected to persist, we are following our restriction plan and implementing campfire closures,” said Deputy Fire Staff Officer for Operations Matt Castle.

“Our high elevation forest areas are rapidly drying and all fuels are now readily available to burn, as seen in recent fires. Fortunately, so far this year, lightning has been minimal so we have not had many fires, yet. These restrictions will minimize the chance of new fire starts, be in line with our partner jurisdictions, and keep the public safe,” Castle said.

The use of pressurized liquid gas stoves is an acceptable alternative in areas where campfires are prohibited. A list of approved and non-approved fire options is posted on the forest website at https://go.usa.gov/xRPHa .

In addition to the expanded campfire restrictions, starting August 6, firewood cutting is being temporarily suspended in Industrial Fire Precaution Level (IFPL) zones 675, 678W and 684. Under these heightened restrictions, called Level III Partial Shutdown, all woodcutting is prohibited. Industrial Fire Precaution Level III does not allow any firewood cutting with a power saw for commercial or personal use. For commercial timber operators, operating at landings, chainsaw use is allowed only from 8 p.m. to 1 p.m. Industrial Fire Precaution Level III will remain in effect until fire danger eases.

Woodcutting restrictions will also change to Level II in zone 680 on August 6. Level II IFPL means that firewood cutters and industrial operators in the Forest are restricted to morning hours of operation only, and must shut down chainsaws and other equipment by 1 p.m. Following equipment shut down, a one-hour fire watch must be maintained.

For current Industrial Fire Precaution Level information and a map of the zones, go to http://www.dnr.wa.gov/ifpl .

What to do if you smell smoke or see a fire:

  • If a fire is burning or there is smoke present, call 9-1-1 or 1-800-826-3383 for the Central Washington Interagency Communication Center
  • Report the exact location of the fire and, if known, what is burning

For additional information visit the forest web page at www.fs.usda.gov/okawenor call the Okanogan-Wenatchee NF Headquarters office at 509-664-9200. Please observe all campfire restrictions and remember that fireworks and exploding targets are never allowed on National Forests.


Get the latest forest news and alerts by texting ‘follow OkaWenNF’ to 40404, ‘liking’ us on Facebook or following us on Twitter @OkaWenNF. The mission of the USDA Forest Service is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.

Fire danger rating increases in eastern Washington

Fire danger rating increases in eastern Washington

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announced today the following changes in the fire danger rating and burn restrictions on DNR-protected lands.

Effective 12:01 a.m., Wednesday, July 5, 2017:

Fire danger will increase from moderate to high Chelan, Douglas, Kittitas, Grant, Yakima, Klickitat, Walla Walla, Columbia, Garfield, Asotin, Whitman and Adams counties. Industrial Fire Precaution Levels move to a Level 2 in Zone 675. Campfires allowed in Approved Designated Campgrounds ONLY.

Effective 12:01 a.m., Friday, July 7, 2017:

Fire danger will increase from moderate to high in Stevens inside Fire Districts 1 & 2, Spokane, Okanogan, and Lincoln counties. Industrial Fire Precaution Levels move to a Level 2 in Zone 684. Campfires allowed in Approved Designated Campgrounds ONLY.

Daily updates on burn restrictions are available at 1-800-323-BURN or on the Fire Danger and Outdoor Burning risk map at https://fortress.wa.gov/dnr/protection/firedanger/.

DNR is responsible for preventing and fighting wildfires on 13 million acres of private, state and tribal-owned forestlands. DNR is the state’s largest on-call fire department and participates in Washington’s coordinated interagency approach to firefighting.

Fire Safety Burn Ban in Douglas County: June 1, 2017 – September 30, 2017

Fire Safety Burn Ban in Douglas County- June 1, 2017 through September 30, 2017, unless otherwise posted.  Outdoor disposal burning is closed.

Recreational Fires (Campfires)

  • On private land – Contact your local fire authority for details.
  • Campgrounds or parks

Contact the specific campground or agency whose facilities you plan to visit. Some links below may help.

Washington State Parks

Washington Department of Natural Resources (DNR) (State lands)

USDA Forest Service:  Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest

Bureau of Land Management (BLM)

. . . Be prepared to have fun without fire and have a safe summer.

Commercial Farmers: If you have a pest and/or disease problem that requires burning, contact your local fire district, then contact Ecology, Central Region, Air Quality Program, for permitting requirements: M-F, 8AM-5PM, (509) 575-2490, ask for the Smoke Team member on duty.