Sonora, CA — Stanislaus Forest Service announces, starting August 3rd, temporary fire restrictions will go into effect in High Hazard Areas of the Stanislaus National Forest.
Forest Supervisor Susan Skalski noted, “Despite a cooler than normal summer, recent hot temperatures have caused tinder-dry conditions in the forest and provided ready fuels for possible wildfires. This Forest Order serves as an extra measure to help reduce the potential for large and damaging wildfires. We are asking the public’s cooperation in helping us prevent destructive fires before they start.”
Beginning at 12:01 a.m. Friday, August 3, 2012, the following prohibitions will go into effect by Forest Order in designated High Hazard Areas on the Groveland, Mi-Wok, Summit, and Calaveras Ranger Districts of the Stanislaus National Forest:
Campfires: Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire, (including briquette type barbecue), or stove fire is prohibited, except within developed recreation sites. Persons with a valid California Campfire Permit may use a portable stove or lantern that uses gas, jellied petroleum, or pressurized liquid fuel.
Smoking is prohibited, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable material.
Welding and blasting also are prohibited, except by special permit.
Violations of these prohibitions is punishable by a fine of not more than $5,000 for an individual or $10,000 for an organization, or imprisonment for not more than six months, or both. The fire restrictions will most likely remain in effect until the end of the 2012 fire season.
Copies of the Forest Order and maps displaying the fire hazard zones are available for viewing at Forest Offices in Sonora, Mi-Wuk Village, Pinecrest, Groveland, and Hathaway Pines. The order and hazard area map may also be viewed on the Forest website here.
Stanislaus National Forest Office locations, hours of summer operation, and telephone numbers are posted on myMotherLode.com here.
Outside the National Forest, on lands protected by CAL FIRE, all burning permits were suspended on or about July 1. All burning permits within the State Responsibility Areas of Tuolumne, Calaveras, Eastern San Joaquin, and Eastern Stanislaus Counties have been suspended. This suspension also applies to Mariposa County within the CAL FIRE Madera Mariposa Merced Unit.
The CAL FIRE open burning suspension does not include campfires in organized campsites open to the public, or on private property if the purpose of the campfire is for cooking or providing warmth and is maintained in such a manner as to prevent the campfire from spreading to the wildland vegetation.
Personal use fuel wood cutting with a chainsaw is permissible on Stanislaus National Forest Land, with a valid permit. Personal use woodcutters should check in advance by calling (209) 532-5601 for recorded daily fire danger and wood cutting information.