MEDFORD, Ore. — A matter of days after cool, wet conditions prompted forestry officials to drop the Fire Danger Level in southwest Oregon to 'Moderate' (blue), that level has dropped even further to 'Low' (Green).
Regardless of the loosening restrictions, however, the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) says that Fire Season remains in effect.
The drop in restrictions is due in large part to rainfall over the past week, "reducing the chance for difficult wildfires," ODF said. But the the prospect that the rainfall will not continue means that forestry officials remain cautious.
"Fire managers will continue to evaluate the upcoming conditions in order to determine if fire season can be terminated soon," ODF said.
Because Fire Season officially continues, the following restrictions remain in effect:
• No debris burning, including piles and debris burned in burn barrels.
• No fireworks on forestlands.
• Exploding targets and tracer ammunition, or any bullet with a pyrotechnic charge in its base, are prohibited.
• Campfires are allowed in designated campgrounds, and on private land with the landowner’s permission. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels may be used as well.
• Motorized vehicles are allowed only on improved roads; one shovel and one gallon of water, or one 2.5 pound or larger fire extinguisher, is required while traveling.
• Smoking while traveling will only be allowed in enclosed vehicles on improved roads, in boats on the water and other specifically designated locations.
• Any electric fence controllers must be approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services, and be installed and used in compliance with the fence controller’s instructions for fire safe operation.
ODF has also dropped the Industrial Fire Precaution Level to IFPL I (one), which means the following fire season requirements are still in effect:
• A Firewatch is required at this and all higher levels unless otherwise waived.
All of the previously listed regulations affect 1.8 million acres of state, private, county, city and Bureau of Land Management lands protected by ODF’s Southwest Oregon District.