Officials cite high wildland fire danger
The Bureau of Land Management Bakersfield Field Office increased fire restrictions for BLM-managed public lands earlier this month due to high wildland fire danger.
The additional restriction includes no campfires, barbeques, or open fires, regardless if you are in a developed campground, other than portable stoves with gas, jelled petroleum, or pressurized liquid fuel with a valid California campfire permit, available free at all BLM, Forest Service and Cal Fire offices or at www.preventwildfireca.org/Permits.
The BLM-managed public lands affected by these fire restrictions are in eastern Fresno, western Kern, Kings, Madera, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Tulare and Ventura counties; as well as the Carrizo Plain National Monument, Keysville Special Recreation Management Area, Lake Isabella and San Joaquin River Gorge.
The National Interagency Fire Center Predictive Services anticipates central and southern California will experience higher than average temperatures, combined with tree mortality and a heavy grass crop that has already cured, or dried out, may result in above normal large wildland fire potential in the Sierra Foothills.
Nearly 90 percent of wildland fires impacting BLM-managed public lands in California are human caused. Individuals who spark wildfires, intentionally or unintentionally, may be held responsible for fire suppression and repair costs. The public is advised to be extremely careful when recreating outdoors, carry a shovel and water at all times, and check weather forecasts and fire danger ratings before leaving home. The following restrictions will remain in place until fire dangers subside:
•No tools powered by internal combustion engines off established roads or trails (such as chainsaws or lawn mowers), except by special permit.
•No smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, or at a developed recreation site, or other designated areas.
•No motorized vehicles off established roads or trails, except by special permit.
•No fireworks, including “safe and sane” fireworks.
•Target shooters may not use incendiary, exploding, tracer, steel core, steel jacketed or armor piercing ammunition.
•No steel targets allowed – hot bullet fragments, exploding targets and metal from recreational shooting can spark a wildland fire. Hunters are allowed to use steel and non-lead ammunition on BLM-managed public lands and must abide by California laws and regulations.
•No welding or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame, except by special permit.
• No use of explosives, except by special permit.
To learn 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 https://go.usa.gov/xmUEG. For specific questions, please contact Ruth Ellison at 661-391-6000.