Fire Restrictions went into effect July 13

Increased fuels due to the wet winter and spring, drying vegetation, high fuel loading and increasing daytime temperatures have prompted the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Winnemucca District, Battle Mountain District and Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest’s Santa Rosa Ranger District to announce the implementation of fire restrictions on all lands under their jurisdiction in northern Nevada effective Thursday, July 13th, at 12:01 a.m. and lasting until further notice. These restrictions are in addition to the current statewide shooting closure.

The wet winter and spring made for denser fine fuels this summer throughout northern Nevada. The combination of these fine fuels and exposure to human-caused ignitions creates a potentially dangerous situation for firefighters, the public, property and natural resources.

“With our heavy fuel loading and increased fire activity, going into fire restrictions is an important step to preventing unwanted fires and protecting our natural resources.” says Brock Uhlig, Acting Fire Management Officer for the Desert Basin Zone.

To report a fire, call Central Nevada Interagency Dispatch Center at 775-623-1555, or dial 911.

Fire restrictions prohibit the following:

•Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire (using wood, charcoal or any other material), campfire, or stove fire except a portable stove using gas, jellied petroleum, or pressurized liquid fuel outside of a developed campground or picnic area (except by permit). Charcoal burns longer and hotter than wood and may appear to be cold; however, embers can linger for hours.

•Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or at a developed campground or picnic area.

•Operating vehicles or other motorized equipment off of existing paved, gravel, or dirt roads.

•Welding or operating an acetylene torch with open flames, except by permit.

•Using, or causing to be used, any explosive, except by permit.

•Possession or use of fireworks (always prohibited) or any other incendiary device.

•Use of tracer rounds, steel-core ammunition, or exploding targets, including Binary Explosive Targets while recreational shooting.

•Affected areas include the following:

•BLM – All areas, roads and trails on the BLM-Winnemucca District (except for the Water Canyon recreation site). All areas, roads and trails on the BLM-Battle Mountain District.

•USFS – All areas, roads, and trails within the Santa Rosa Ranger District except within Lye Creek campground located east of U.S. Route 95 and north of Nevada State Route 290. The district is located northwest of Paradise Valley and east of the towns of Orovada and McDermitt.

“We want our users to be able to enjoy the outdoors with friends and family,” said Joseph Garrotto, Santa Rosa District Ranger. “However, it is important that during times of heightened fire danger that everyone who uses public lands recreate responsibly and be careful with fire.”

As fire season continues the BLM and USFS will be aggressively citing those who do not comply with the posted restrictions and those who use or possess fireworks. Violation of these prohibitions on BLM-managed land 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). Violators found guilty of having a fire during restrictions on the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest could receive a maximum fine of $5,000 or six months in jail or both. Persons may also be responsible for resource damage, suppression costs, and any injuries that occur if they are found liable for causing a wildfire.

For more information or clarification on the restrictions, please contact the BLM-Winnemucca District Office at 775-623-1500, USFS Santa Rosa Ranger District at 775-289-5025 ext. 4.