Forest officials for the Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests and Crooked River National Grassland and the Prineville District Bureau of Land Management will implement a complete ban on all campfires and propane fire pits on all federally managed public lands and raise the Industrial Fire Precaution Level (IFPL) to IV effective Friday.
With multiple human-caused starts in the past several days while firefighters battle numerous large fires in Oregon, in addition to the EXTREME fire danger in Central Oregon, the decision was made to ban all active flames from campfires and propane fire pits.
This is a change from previous Public Use Restrictions where campfires were allowed in designated campgrounds. Camp stoves used specifically for cooking are still allowed on public lands.
An IFPL Level IV or “General Shutdown” means that all industrial operations (thinning and logging) are prohibited.
No waivers will be granted for any activity. Personal use firewood cutting remains prohibited under this level.
Fire officials encourage the public to be diligent with all ignition sources on public lands, ensuring all cigarette butts are properly extinguished in an ashtray or dish of water and spark arrestors are in place on all motorized equipment.
Additionally, all motorized recreationists should park in areas cleared of vegetation – the undercarriage of a vehicle can be hot enough to start a fire.
Also, officials want to remind the public that using explosive target material, such as Tannerite, and the use of explosives and fireworks continues to be prohibited on all federal public lands.
For more information on wildfires in Central Oregon, visit: www.centraloregonfire.org