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Fire Restrictions Reduced and Winter Burning Projects Underway

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November 19, 2011 12:44AM
Fire Restrictions Reduced and Winter Burning Projects Underway
Release Date: Nov 18, 2011

San Bernardino, Calif., November 18, 2011 – With recent rain across the southland, forest officials on the San Bernardino National Forest reduced fire restrictions effective today and have begun winter burning projects.

“While campfires and recreational shooting are being allowed in portions of the forest, we are not completely out of wildfire danger yet, and ask the public to always exercise caution and call ahead to check conditions,” said San Bernardino National Forest Fire Management Officer Shawna Legarza. “The change in the weather also has allowed us to begin our winter burning program, which is one of our tools to help reduce the wildfire threat in local communities.”

Fire Restrictions

Under the reduced fire restrictions, visitors may have wood and charcoal fires in agency-provided campfire rings at campgrounds, picnic areas and yellow post sites. Recreational target shooting is permitted within designated sites in the Big Bear area and permitted areas on the San Jacinto Ranger District.

Current fire restriction and guidelines in effect on the San Bernardino National Forest are as follows:

· Wood and charcoal campfires are allowed only in developed campgrounds, picnic areas and Yellow Post campsites within agency-provided fire rings or designated stoves.

· Campfire permits are required for propane and gas stoves and lanterns used outside of developed recreation sites.

· Recreational shooting is limited to designated sites and public shooting ranges operated under special use permit only, except those engaged in legal hunting.

· The 1N09 Recreational Shooting area remains closed.

· An approved spark arrester is required for any internal combustion engine operated on designated forest routes. These include chainsaws, generators, motorcycles, and off-highway vehicles.

· Smoking is limited to enclosed vehicles, developed recreation sites and areas cleared of vegetation, three feet in diameter.

· Fireworks are always prohibited on the San Bernardino National Forest. Tracer, armor piercing, steel core, and Teflon ammunitions are also prohibited, as is discharging a firearm at any exploding target.

Winter Burning Projects

As part of a continuing effort to reduce the threat of catastrophic wildfire and improve forest health, the San Bernardino National Forest has started this season’s prescribed burning program. The prescribed fire program will continue through the winter months as weather and conditions permit.

The ignition of all prescribed burns is dependent on the availability of personnel and equipment, appropriate conditions, and in coordination with the National Weather Serviceand South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD)before and during prescribed burns in order to manage smoke production and minimize impacts as much as possible.

Fire managers follow a burn plan that outlines the “prescription” or environmental conditions such as temperature, wind, fuel moisture, ventilation, and relative humidity that need to be present before the project begins. When the criteria are met, crews implement, monitor, and patrol each burn to ensure it meets the goals and objectives outlined by managers.

We appreciate the public’s tolerance of some smoke impacts in order to achieve the San Bernardino National Forest’s fire prevention and resource management goals, and the public can call our local offices to find out where we are burning at the following numbers:

Big Bear Ranger Station & Discovery Center 909-382-2790
Lytle Creek Ranger Station 909-382-2851
Idyllwild Ranger Station 909-382-2922
Mill Creek Work Center 909-382-2882
Santa Rosa & San Jacinto Mountains National Monument 760-862-9984

For additional information about the San Bernardino National Forest, please visit: http://www.fs.usda.gov/sbnf

About the U.S. Forest Service, San Bernardino National Forest

The San Bernardino National Forest is comprised of three Ranger Districts spanning 676,666 acres in San Bernardino and Riverside counties. From the desert floor to the pristine mountain peaks, the San Bernardino National Forest offers natural environments, spectacular scenery, developed campgrounds and picnic areas, numerous recreational opportunities, and the solitude of quiet wilderness and open space for the over 24 million residents of Southern California and those visiting the area. The forest environment also provides habitat for numerous plants and animals and is crucial in sustaining drinking water, air, and soil quality.

Fire Restrictions Reduced and Winter Burning Projects Underway

Rick2246November 19, 2011 12:44AM

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