WFO-2006-37 RELEASE DATE: July 14, 2006
CONTACTS: BLM – Winnemucca – Jamie Thompson (775) 623-1500 or 224-3093 or
Battle Mountain – Jennifer Myslivy (775) 623-1500, 635-4000 or 635-3679
Tonopah Field Station – Karen Eller (775) 482-7800 or 761-5516
USFS – June McMillen (775) 738-5171
NDF – Tom Turk or Sam Hicks (775) 738-3454
FIRE RESTRICTIONS BEGIN JULY 21 FOR NORTH-CENTRAL NEVADA
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Battle Mountain and Winnemucca Field Offices, the US Forest Service Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest's Austin, Santa Rosa and Tonopah Ranger Districts, and the Nevada Division of Forestry (NDF) announce the implementation of fire restrictions at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, July 21, 2006, within the Humboldt, Pershing, Lander, Eureka, Esmeralda, and Nye County Fire Protection Districts and portions of Washoe, Lyon and Churchill Counties.
Two wet winters in a row in north-central Nevada have produced a heavy buildup of grass and brush at lower elevations. Hot weather has dried out this vegetation. This has created devastating wildfires this season. The public is encouraged to safely enjoy the public lands, bearing in mind that in recent years Nevada has experienced wildfires exceeding 50,000 acres in size caused by careless people. To report fires, dial 911.
Fire restrictions apply as follows:
BLM – To all areas, roads and trails outside of the developed recreation sites on the Battle Mountain and Winnemucca Field Offices. [Exceptions for the Winnemucca Field Office only: 1.) Fire restrictions do not apply to fires in constructed steel fire rings and grates; and 2.) Open fires are authorized on desert playas (dry lake beds) more than 300 feet from the nearest vegetation, but open fires on playas within the Black Rock Desert-High Rock Canyon Emigrant Trails National Conservation Area must be built on fire-pans to protect the playa surface from fire scars.]
Forest Service – To all areas, roads and trails outside of the developed recreation sites on the Austin, Santa Rosa and Tonopah Ranger Districts of the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest. [Exception for the Santa Rosa Ranger District only: Persons with a valid campfire permit in possession. These permits, valid on specified areas of the Santa Rosa Ranger District, are free of charge and may be obtained only at the Santa Rosa Ranger District Office, 1200 E. Winnemucca Blvd., Winnemucca, Nevada 89445 (775) 623-5025.]
Fireworks – Use of fireworks is prohibited on public lands.
Fire Restrictions Prohibit:
- Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire outside of developed campgrounds/picnic areas.
- Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or at a developed campground or picnic area.
- Welding or operating an acetylene torch with open flames.
- Using, or causing to be used, any explosive.
- Firing a tracer bullet or incendiary device or possessing/using fireworks.
- Open burning (e.g. weeds, brush and yard debris).
The BLM and Forest Service strongly encourage all visitors to these federally managed lands to carry a shovel, one-to-five gallons of water, and a fire extinguisher. They also recommend avoiding cross-country travel whenever possible to prevent grass from igniting as a result of hot exhaust systems. Even though cell phone coverage is spotty in many areas, all agencies still recommend that visitors carry cell phones while in the wildlands or national forests to help report wildfires.
The following are exempt from this order
- Persons with a valid permit specifically authorizing the otherwise prohibited act or omission.
- Any federal, State or local officer, or member of an organized rescue or firefighting force in the performance of an official duty.
- (NDF-specific) Owners of undeveloped private property or persons using the property with the property owner’s permission for the purpose of recreation so long as the use does not create a threat to surrounding property.
- Portable stoves using gas, jellied petroleum or pressurized liquid fuel.
- Campfires in developed recreation sites.
The BLM, Forest Service and NDF will be aggressively citing those who do not comply with these restrictions. Violation of these prohibitions is subject to punishment by a fine of not more than $10,000 or imprisonment for not more than six months or both as Class B Misdemeanors under federal law (agency statutes vary). Persons may also be responsible for resource damage, suppression costs, and any injuries that occur if they are found liable for causing a wildfire.
Other areas currently enforcing fire restrictions include the BLM's Carson City and Las Vegas Field Offices and contiguous Districts of the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest.
In areas where temperatures have been cooler or where more precipitation has fallen, fire restrictions are not currently in effect. These areas include BLM’s Elko and Ely Districts, BLM’s Eagle Lake District (Susanville, California and adjacent NW Nevada), BLM’s Surprise District (Cedarville, California and adjacent NW Nevada) and the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest’s Jarbidge, Mountain City, Ruby Mountains, and Ely Ranger Districts. However, during the hot season of the year extreme care should be taken at all times to avoid causing wildfires.
More information is available by calling the following offices: the BLM Winnemucca Field Office at (775) 623-1500, Battle Mountain Field Office at (775) 635-4000 or Tonopah Field Station at (775) 482-7800; the USFS Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, Forest Supervisor’s Office at (775) 331-6444, Santa Rosa Ranger District at (775) 623-5025, Austin Ranger District at (775) 964-2671, or Tonopah Ranger District at (775) 482-6286; or the NDF State Office at (775) 684-2512, or Northern Division at (775) 738-3454.
Helpful web sites:
www.fs.fed.us/r4/htnf; gacc.nifc.gov/wgbc; www.forestry.nv.gov/main/fire01.htm; www.nifc.gov.; and www.nv.blm.gov/Winnemucca/fire/default.htm.
– BLM –