Tonto, Prescott national forests ease fire restrictions due to increased monsoon activity

Jul 19, 2022, 4:25 AM

(Facebook Photo/U.S. Forest Service-Tonto National Forest)...

(Facebook Photo/U.S. Forest Service-Tonto National Forest)

(Facebook Photo/U.S. Forest Service-Tonto National Forest)

PHOENIX — The remaining national forests in Arizona with heightened fire restrictions have eased regulations amid increased monsoon activity.

The Tonto National Forest transitioned on Monday from a Stage 2 fire restriction to Stage 1, while the Prescott National Forest rescinded all fire restrictions on Friday morning.

Stage 1 fire restrictions prohibit igniting, building, maintaining or using a fire, campfire or stove fire outside a structure provided by the forest service within a designated area.

Discharging a firearm, air rifle or gas gun are prohibited with the restriction, the forest service said, and there are also limitations placed on smoking.

A full breakdown of rules with the Stage 1 fire restriction can be found on the Tonto National Forest website.

Rocky Gilbert, deputy fire management officer for the Tonto National Forest, in a press release also asked people to be aware of dragging trailer chains and parking on dry grass along State Route 87 as vehicle fires continue to occur on the roadway.

“Aside from lightning-caused fires, vehicle fires continue to occur along S.R. 87,” he said. “We encourage the public to have their vehicles inspected before heading to the forest. Making sure your tires are in good shape to avoid a blowout and that your axles are properly greased can help reduce the risk of a roadside fire.”

Meanwhile, the Prescott National Forest asks people to remain vigilant and avoid activities that could accidentally cause wildfires, such as refraining from using campfires on dry and windy days. People are also reminded that it is always illegal to leave a campfire unattended or use fireworks on any national forest land.

A map of current fire restrictions on federal and state-managed land can be found on the Arizona Interagency Wildfire Prevention website.

The Coconino, Kaibab, Apache-Sitgreaves and Coronado national forests all lifted their Stage 2 fire restrictions in June.

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Tonto, Prescott national forests ease fire restrictions due to increased monsoon activity