BLM Bakersfield and Central Coast field offices to issue seasonal fire
EL DORADO HILLS, Calif. — The Bureau of Land Management will issue seasonal fire restrictions for public lands managed by the Bakersfield Field Office (effective May 23), and the Central Coast Field Office (effective May 25). Seasonal restrictions are in addition to the year-round statewide fire prevention order, and will remain in effect until further notice.
Fire restrictions primarily affect BLM-managed public lands located within the jurisdiction of the Bakersfield Field Office (in eastern Fresno, western Kern, Kings, Madera, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Tulare and Ventura counties, including the Carrizo Plain National Monument, Keysville Special Recreation Management Area, Lake Isabella and San Joaquin River Gorge) and the Central Coast Field Office (in western Fresno, Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz counties including Panoche, Tumey and Griswold hills).
On average, human-caused wildfires make up 95 percent of all wildfires in California. “Records show recreational target shooting has sparked more than half the wildland fires within the Central Coast Field Office boundary in the last decade, posing considerable threat to public safety.” said Central Coast Field Manager Ben Blom. “Taking individual responsibility to reduce wildfire risk, while recreating on public lands, around homes and communities before a fire occurs can help keep property, the public and firefighters safe.”
Central Coast Field Office restrictions:
- No target shooting – hot bullet fragments, exploding targets and metal from recreational shooting can spark a wildfire. Visit www.wheretoshoot.org for alternative recreational target shooting locations. Use of firearms for hunting is still allowed.
- No campfires, barbecues or open fires, except in a developed campground. Portable stoves with gas, jelled petroleum, or pressurized liquid fuel are allowed with a valid California campfire permit available free at all BLM, U.S. Forest Service and CAL FIRE offices, or at https://www.readyforwildfire.org/prevent-wildfire/campfire-safety/. During the issuance of Red Flag Warnings and Fire Weather Watches, as determined by the National Weather Service (see https://www.weather.gov/fire/), all use of campfires, is temporarily suspended to reduce the potential of unintended wildland fire ignitions for the period of the event (updated 5/23).
Bakersfield Field Office restrictions:
- Target shooters may not use incendiary, exploding, tracer, steel core, steel jacketed or armor piercing ammunition. No steel targets allowed – hot bullet fragments. Use of firearms for hunting is still allowed.
- No campfires or open flames of any kind. Portable stoves with gas, jelled petroleum, or pressurized liquid fuel are allowed with a valid California campfire permit available free at all BLM, U.S. Forest Service and CAL FIRE offices, or at https://www.readyforwildfire.org/prevent-wildfire/campfire-safety/ (updated 5/23).
The following fire restrictions will go into affect for both field offices:
- Hunters must abide by state of California laws and regulations. Shooters actively engaged in the legal take/pursuit of game and non-game species must have a valid California hunting license and must abide by California laws and regulations.
- No motorized vehicles off BLM designated roads or trails.
- No tools powered by internal combustion engines off BLM designated roads or trails (such as chainsaws or lawn mowers).
- No smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, or at a developed recreation site, or other designated areas.
- No welding or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame.
“Due to dry conditions and high fire danger, it is necessary to implement these seasonal fire restrictions,” said Bakersfield Field Manager Gabriel Garcia. “These proactive measures are put in place to help protect public land visitors, communities, and natural resources from the risk of wildfire. We ask for your cooperation to help minimize fire potential.”
Fire Prevention Orders for the BLM-managed public lands in the Bakersfield, and Central Coast field offices are available online. To learn more about how you can do your part to prevent wildland fires visit www.readyforwildfire.org.
A listing of fire restrictions throughout BLM California is available at http://ow.ly/RQVm50JcYrV. For specific questions, please contact the Bakersfield Field Office at 661-391-6000 or Central Coast Field Office at 831-582-2200.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.