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The Coconino County Board of Supervisors voted today to enact Stage Two Fire Restrictions effective immediately.
The ordinance applies to private lands in unincorporated areas, which are private lands outside of cities and towns.
The Board enacted a campfire ban in late April to protect the health and safety of firefighters during the COVID-19 pandemic and reduce the impact of poor air quality on those suffering from or at risk of COVID-19.
The Coconino and Kaibab National Forests will implement Stage Two Fire Restrictions across both forests at 8 a.m. Saturday June 13 due to increasing fire danger and the need to prevent human-caused wildfires during potentially dangerous fire conditions.
Stage Two Fire Restrictions prohibit:
All open fires and campfires
Outdoor smoking (except in closed vehicles or developed campsites free from combustible material)
Outdoor mechanical and industrial operations
Use of motorized vehicles off of designated trails and roads
Operating internal combustion engines without spark arresting devices
Possessing, discharging, or using any fireworks
Explosive targets and tracer round ammunition
The public is urged to exercise diligence in protecting the community from human caused wildfire. “This is an extremely dry period coupled with the COVID-19 pandemic. People need to exercise extreme caution,” stated Coconino County Chairwoman Liz Archuleta. “A single spark can have devastating effects with the potential to ruin peoples’ lives and destroy the forests we love. We strongly urge everyone to be fire wise and observe these restrictions. Reducing human caused wildfires will decrease the strain on fire agencies and resource limitations as a result of COVID-19 for both responding to an emergency as well as fighting wildland fires.”
Many parts of Coconino County are prone to wildfire. District 3 Supervisor Matt Ryan stated, “Living in a fire-based ecosystem requires a level of vigilance and understanding, part of this is understanding why we have these restrictions in place and helping the community by abiding with all fire restrictions.”
While activities, that don’t involve mechanical operations, such as lawn care, home construction and community clean-ups, are not specifically prohibited, residents and visitors should use their best judgment when considering whether to engage in any activity that could spark a fire. Anyone engaging in these activities could be held legally responsible.
For the full Wildfire Defense Ordinance and to sign-up for emergency notifications, go to https://coconino.az.gov/1778/Wildland-Fire.