Joint News Release: FIRE SEASON BEGINS JUNE 15TH
The Douglas Forest Protective Association, the Umpqua National Forest, and the Bureau of Land Management, Roseburg District, have announced that the 2020 fire season will officially begin Monday, June 15th at 12:01 AM. This includes all private, county, state, Bureau of Land Management, and Bureau of Indian Affairs lands within the Douglas District, in addition to public lands within the Umpqua National Forest. The declaration of fire season imposes certain fire restrictions on both the general public and industrial operators to help prevent wildfires.
In addition to the declaration of fire season, both DFPA and the Roseburg District BLM will implement Public Use Restrictions on Monday. The Umpqua National Forest went into Level 1 Public Use Restrictions on June 1st. While Public Use Restriction do not prohibit public access to the forest, they do restrict certain fire prone activities which are known to start wildfires. Under the Public Use Restrictions, the following fire prevention measures will be in effect:
• Smoking is prohibited while traveling, except in vehicles on improved roads, in boats on the water, and at other designated locations.
• Backyard debris burning, including the use of burn barrels, is prohibited.
• Open fires are prohibited, including campfires, charcoal fires, cooking fires and warming fires, except at designated sites. Portable cooking stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed elsewhere. Propane fueled campfire devices are permitted on national forest lands. Designated sites include:
BLM designated sites: Susan Creek Campground, Tyee Campground, Millpond Campground and Cavitt Creek Campground.
Douglas County Parks designated sites: Amacher Park, Douglas County Fairgrounds, Pass Creek Campground, Stanton Park, Chief Miwaleta Campground, and Whistler’s Bend Campground.
Private Campgrounds: Seven Feathers RV Resort and Umpqua Riverfront RV Park & Boat Ramp.
Umpqua National Forest sites: Rujada, Boulder Flat, Toketee Lake, and Poole Creek Campgrounds. More campgrounds may open in the future.
• The use of fireworks are prohibited.
• Motor vehicles, including motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles, are only allowed on improved roads that are free of flammable vegetation, except for the culture and harvest of agricultural crops. In addition, each vehicle traveling on forest roads must have an axe, a shovel, and one gallon of water or one operational 2½ pound or larger fire extinguisher. All-terrain vehicles and motorcycles must be equipped with one operational 2 ½ pound or larger fire extinguisher.
• Any electric fence controller in use shall be listed by a nationally recognized testing laboratory or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services and be operated in compliance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
The official fire danger for the Douglas District can be found online at www.dfpa.net or by calling DFPA’s 24 hour information line at (541) 672-0379 and applies to the following restrictions.
• The use of power saws for non-industrial purposes are allowed all day during LOW fire danger. This activity is permitted before 1:00 PM or after 8:00 PM during MODERATE fire danger and before 10:00 AM or after 8:00 PM during HIGH fire danger. During Extreme fire danger, non-industrial power saw use is prohibited. Each power saw is required to have a shovel and a fire extinguisher of at least 8 ounce capacity immediately available. In addition, a one hour fire watch is required following the use of each saw. On BLM managed lands in the Roseburg District, the use of non-industrial power saws or other equipment with internal combustion engines used for felling, bucking, skidding, or wood cutting is prohibited.
• The cutting, grinding or welding of metal for non-industrial purposes is allowed all day during LOW fire danger. This activity is permitted before 1:00 PM or after 8:00 PM during MODERATE fire danger and before 10:00 AM or after 8:00 PM during HIGH fire danger. During EXTREME fire danger, the cutting, grinding or welding of metal is prohibited. These activities can only be conducted in an area free of flammable vegetation and a charged garden hose or a 2 ½ pound or larger fire extinguisher must be immediately available. The cutting, grinding or welding of metal is prohibited on BLM managed lands in the Roseburg District.
• The cutting, trimming or mowing of dried, cured grass is allowed all day during LOW fire danger. This activity is permitted before 1:00 PM or after 8:00 PM during MODERATE fire danger and before 10:00 AM or after 8:00 PM during HIGH fire danger. During Extreme fire danger, the cutting, trimming or mowing of dried or cured grass is prohibited. The culture and harvest of agricultural crops is exempt from this requirement.
• Any non-industrial improvement or development taking place on private property that utilizes power driven machinery may operate all day during LOW fire danger. These activities are permitted before 1:00 PM or after 8:00 PM during MODERATE fire danger and before 10:00 AM or after 8 PM during HIGH fire danger. During EXTREME fire danger, these activities are prohibited unless a waiver has been issued. Each piece of power driven machinery working is required to have a shovel and a 2 ½ pound or larger fire extinguisher. In addition, a fire watch is required for at least one hour once the equipment has completed work for the day.
In addition to the Public Use Restrictions, the use of exploding targets and tracer ammunition are prohibited during a declared fire season and the use sky lanterns are prohibited year-round in Oregon. Additional fire restrictions or closures may be in place through private industrial landowners or other public land management agencies on the lands they own or manage.
The declaration of fire season also means the start of industrial fire regulations. On Monday, the entire Douglas District and the Umpqua National Forest will go into Industrial Fire Precaution Level I (one.) During IFPL I, smoking is prohibited while working on, or traveling through an industrial operation. In addition, specified fire tools and suppression equipment must be on site and ready for use at all industrial operations and a fire watch is required once work has completed for the day.
For more information about public and industrial fire restrictions, visit the following sites:
• Douglas Forest Protective Association: www.dfpa.net/public-fire-restrictions
• Bureau of Land Management, Roseburg District: https://www.blm.gov/programs/public-safety-and-fire/fire-and-aviation/regional-info/oregon-washington/fire-restrictions
• Umpqua National Forest: https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/umpqua/alerts-notices/?cid=fsbdev3_056210