Fire Restrictions Increase On Central Oregon Public Lands
Jul 24,2006 00:00 by Bend Weekly News Sources

Restrictions on firewood cutting and other industrial activities will soon increase on Central Oregon federal lands because of increasing fire danger.

Today, at 12:01 a.m. on July 24, the Ochoco and Deschutes National Forests, Crooked River National Grassland and Prineville District of the Bureau of Land Management moved move to an Industrial Fire Precaution Level-III.

The regulation is commonly known as a partial shutdown and affects industrial operations where spark-emitting equipment such as chainsaws, welders and logging machinery is used on federal land.  Operators should refer to their contracts for further information.

All personal use and commercial woodcutting is prohibited at this level, as outlined in firewood synopses distributed when permits were obtained.

“As fire season proceeds, our restrictions on high-risk activities will continue to increase,” said Chris Hoff, interagency fire management officer for the three agencies.  “We’re clearly in an escalating fire danger situation at this time due to very hot weather and low fuel moistures.”

Fire managers urge visitors to Central Oregon federal lands to be extra careful with fire, particularly campfires.  People should never leave campfires unattended or depart campsites unless fires are out cold.

Fire managers anticipate further restrictions as hot, dry weather continues to be in the forecast.

For updates on Central Oregon fire restrictions, please call 1-800-523-4737 or log onto http://www.fs.fed.us/r6/centraloregon/fire/ifpl.htm