The summer monsoon has decreased the fire danger in Grand Canyon National Park, allowing park officials to lift all fire restrictions that had been in place since June 26.
Also, fire restrictions have been eased in eastern Arizona forests, and more limits should be lifted by Thursday.
The Grand Canyon restrictions will be lifted at 8 a.m. Wednesday in cooperation with the U.S. Forest Service, tribal partners and intergovernmental agencies in northern Arizona, according to a news release from the park.
The fire danger still remains very high, downgraded from extreme, and visitors should continue to exercise extra care and caution.
The National Park Services recommends:
Before going hiking or camping, check for fire restrictions and closures in the area. Direct questions to the agency that manages the public lands you are visiting.
If you are a smoker, smoke only on paved surfaces or in an enclosed vehicle; and never toss cigarette butts on the ground. Use an ashtray or pack cigarette butts out in your pocket.
If you are using a portable stove, be careful to set the stove up in an area void of fuels, and be careful to prevent the stove from tipping over.
Campfires should not be left unattended, and should be completely extinguished when leaving your campsite. Consider alternatives to campfires.
Practice "leave no trace" principles, including packing out all burned materials.
If you are driving on unpaved roads, be careful of parking or driving your vehicle in tall, dry vegetation. Hot vehicle parts may start a fire.
If you see smoke or fire, note the location and report it to authorities. Do NOT attempt to put out a fire by yourself.
In addition, the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests lifted a temporary safety closure order for Rodeo-Chediski, Show Low South and Timber Mesa areas
The temporary closure was to ensure public and firefighter safety, and to protect private property, and was implemented June 19. It was lifted Monday, also because of sufficient moisture from the monsoon.
The ASNFs were working with neighboring forests and the White Mountain Fire Restrictions Working Group in lifting the Stage I & II fire restrictions for Apache, Greenlee, Coconino and Navajo Counties. They anticipate the restrictions to be lifted Thursday.
Violation of the prohibitions is punishable by a fine of not more than $10,000, imprisonment for more than six months, or both. Fireworks are always prohibited on National Forest land. Arizona state lands have imposed their own restrictions separately.
Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.
Sunday, August 31 2014 3:28 PM EDT2014-08-31 19:28:29 GMT
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