Smokey Bear Says Only You Can Prevent A Fire During The Eclipse
The U.S. Bureau of Land Management has issued some final comments about fire safety for Wyoming residents and the estimated hundreds of thousands of visitors heading here for the total eclipse of the sun Aug. 21.
Fire danger will remain high during this time, and the BLM will have fire restrictions on the lands it administers throughout the state.
"As such, wildland firefighters and our friend Smokey Bear would like to ask visitors and residents alike to follow the following fire-safety tips," the BLM says.
- Avoid parking or driving over dry grass. Vehicles can ignite fires.
- Before departing on a trip, check your trailer. Make sure all safety chains are properly secured.
- Never leave a campfire unattended. However, Natrona County has imposed a complete fire ban, including campfires.
These fire-wise actions can save lives and property, as well as help promote healthy ecosystems on sustainable, working public lands.
The BLM also has other year-round fire-related restrictions on its lands:
- Discharging or using any fireworks.
- Discharging of a firearm using incendiary or tracer ammunition.
- Burning, igniting or causing to burn any tire, wire, magnesium, or any other hazardous or explosive material.
- Operating any off-road vehicle on public lands, unless the vehicle is equipped with a properly installed spark arrester.
Some BLM-administered lands also may have other fire restrictions.
Anytime you plan to travel across or stay on BLM-administered lands, make sure to check if the areas you will be accessing are under restrictions known as stage 1 and stage 2 restrictions.
- Stage I restrictions intend to prevent the start of wildfires based on human activities that are known to be high risk, specifically smoking and campfires.
- Stage II restrictions intensifies the stage I restrictions by focusing on activities, although normally managed under permit or contract, have a relatively high risk of starting a fire. These restricts affect forest users and will have economic impacts to contractors.
Failure to comply with fire restrictions on federal lands is punishable by law. Those found responsible for starting wildfires will also face restitution costs for suppressing the fire.
For more information about these restrictions and where they are in effect, visit the BLM's website for Wyoming.