Springerville, AZ – July 23, 2020 – Visitors to the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests may now have a campfire. The campfire ban for the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests was terminated today, July 23, 2020. Additionally, with fire behavior being generally low to moderate, the Southwest Area moved to Preparedness Level 2.
“The campfire ban was an effort to prevent overtaxing federal, state and local fire and medical resources. With the onset of monsoon season and lower fire danger, we feel comfortable terminating the campfire ban. We urge visitors to follow all campfire rules and make sure their campfires are 100% out before they leave,” said, Gary Strickland, Forest Fire Management Officer, Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests.
In the United States, over 80 percent of wildfires are human caused. Examples of preventable human-caused fires are unattended campfires, campfires not being “dead out,” cigarettes thrown out of vehicle windows, and vehicles parking on tall grass with hot exhaust pipes and dragging tow-chains. Please take precautions and heed campfire guidelines to prevent wildfires.
A campfire can be the highlight of camping, and it provides warmth to hunters and other outdoor enthusiasts. It is each visitor’s responsibility to properly maintain and extinguish a campfire to prevent wildfires.
- Never cut whole trees or branches, dead or alive. Live materials will not burn and dead standing trees, snags, are often homes for birds and other wildlife.
- Do not burn aerosol cans, pressurized containers, glass or aluminum cans. They could explode, shatter and/or create harmful fumes.
- Keep the fire to a manageable size.
- Never leave your campfire unattended.
Ensure campfire is fully extinguished:
- Allow wood to burn completely to ash, if possible.
- Pour water on the fire. Drown all embers, not just the red ones. Pour until hissing sound stops.
- If water is not available, stir dirt or sand into the embers with a shovel to bury the fire.
- Scrape any remaining sticks and logs with a shovel to remove any embers.
- Continue adding water, dirt, or sand and stir with a shovel until all material is cool.
- If it is too hot to touch, it is too hot to leave.