VALE, OREGON- June 19, 2009. The Vale District, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), is urging users and neighbors of public lands to be aware of increasing fire danger. Heavy spring rains have produced abundant grasses. Even though the rains have continued in recent days, it will take only a few hours of sunny weather, wind and warm temperatures to continue to cure and dry this extremely heavy fine fuel load. The BLM is asking the public to be very cautious with campfires, debris burning, controlled burning, and to choose parking areas that are clear of dry grasses and other flammables. The use of fireworks is strictly prohibited on all BLM lands.
If you plan to have a campfire, never leave it unattended; ensure it is dead out before leaving it. Choose parking areas that are clear of fuels and beware of fine fuels collecting near exhaust systems of your vehicle. While fireworks are not banned on private property, BLM asks you to be very cautious when they are used. If controlled burning or debris burning is on your “to do” list, please take the time to plan ahead, secure the proper permits, check weather forecasts before burning, create control lines to assist in the containment of the fire, have plenty of water on hand to extinguish a fire that is getting out of control, and never burn when it’s windy.
It is also important for individuals to notify the Vale BLM Dispatch Center at 541-473-6295 before burning if they plan to conduct controlled burns near public lands. This early notice will help us prevent a situation where suppression resources are dispatched to a false alarm.
Remember, if you start a wildfire, or your controlled burn spreads onto public lands, you may be responsible for the suppression costs and in some cases civil and criminal penalties.
For further information, or to report wildfires, please contact the Vale BLM Dispatch Center at 541-473-6295 or 1-800-982-0287.
Additional information about the Vale District can be found by visiting the district website at www.blm.gov/or/districts/vale.
The BLM manages more land – 258 million acres – than any other Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western States, including Alaska. The Bureau, with a budget of about $1 billion, also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM’s multiple-use mission is to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. The Bureau accomplishes this by managing such activities as outdoor recreation, livestock grazing, mineral development, and energy production, and by conserving natural, historical, cultural, and other resources on public lands.
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