2013-06-27 / Front Page

Firefighters increase area safeguards

Erik Skindrud/GAZETTE EDITOR

Open-flame fires, including charcoal-fuelled barbeques and smoking outside of vehicles, are banned as of Tuesday, July 2 in Sierra National Forest. Blasting or welding, and driving internal-combustion-powered vehicles off of roads, are prohibited as well.

"Conditions on the forest... and the recent fire activity observed during the Carstens Fire, confirm that it will take diligence of all of usto prevent wildfires," said Joseph Reyes, fire management officer for Sierra National Forest.

Special restrictions on chain-saw use for firewood cutting are in effect as well. Firewood cutters are asked to call a special fire information line at (559) 346-1525.

Similar safety restrictions went into effect in Stanislaus National Forest on June 22. 

"A low snow pack, drying winds and recent hot temperatures have caused tinder-dry conditions in the forest," Stanislaus National Forest supervisor Susan Skalski said.

The Carstens Fire, which burned more than 1,700 acres in June, started when an unextinguished campfire spread to adjacent brush. Erik Skindrud/The GAZETTEThe Carstens Fire, which burned more than 1,700 acres in June, started when an unextinguished campfire spread to adjacent brush. Erik Skindrud/The GAZETTE

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