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forest_service_logo.gifThe first notices of fire restrictions on the national forest around Sedona went out Wednesday, May 23.
By Mike Cosentino
Larson Newspapers

The first notices of fire restrictions on the national forest around Sedona went out Wednesday, May 23.

Fire officials say more will follow in the drought-plagued areas of Arizona and the Southwest.

For now, only restrictions on campfires and smoking will be implemented on most of the Red Rock Ranger District of the Coconino National Forest and all districts of the Kaibab National Forest, effective May 23 at 8 a.m.

In those areas, fires, campfires and charcoal fires will be

prohibited outside of developed recreation areas. Pressurized

liquid or gas stoves, lanterns and heaters meeting safety specifications will be allowed.

Smoking will only be allowed within an enclosed vehicle or building or in a developed

recreation site.

Fireworks are always prohibited on National Forest land.

On the Coconino National Forest, these restrictions will apply on most of the Red Rock Ranger District, except the area south of I-17, east of Forest Road 618 and north of Forest Road 214.

“Much of the higher country of the Coconino National Forest received enough rain this week to delay the need for campfire restrictions,” according to Bruce Greco, Coconino National Forest fire staff officer.

The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors, at its meeting in Cottonwood on Monday, May 21, approved placement of 5,000- to 20,000-gallon “bladders” at strategic points around the county.

The bladders are portable swimming pool-type of structures that are mounted on trailers. The intent is to place them in rural areas in case of fires. All types of water-hauling vehicles, whether county, federal or municipal, can fill them with water in the case of a fire.

Campers are reminded to exercise campfire safety in areas where campfires are allowed. Before lighting a campfire, make sure you have a cleared area, a shovel and adequate water.

n Drown your campfire with water and dirt.

n Stir to make sure all burned materials are extinguished.

n Feel with your bare hand to make sure your fire is out cold.

Violation of these prohibitions is punishable by a fine of not more than $5,000, imprisonment for not more than six months, or both.

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