Prevent wildfires on public lands; tips from BLM

h/t Teton County Emergency Management

CHEYENNE, Wyo. – Spring-like weather and sunny days make for an inviting time to visit public land. As things warm up, please follow these simple tips on how you can do your part to prevent wildfires on your public lands.

  • More people may be recreating on public lands during this time of social distancing. Be aware of local public safety area closures. Take extra precautions before venturing out and be careful with anything that could start a fire.
  • Maintain your mechanical equipment. Many human-caused wildfires occur near roadways, communities and recreational areas, posing considerable public safety threats. Carry a fire extinguisher and know how to use it.
  • If towing a boat or trailer, ensure your safety chains are properly secure and not dragging on the ground.
  • Never park your vehicle over dead grass and avoid driving through the tall grass—your vehicle can ignite the fuels and start a fire.
  • When camping on public lands, never leave your campfire unattended. Ensure your campfire is “dead” out before leaving or turning in for the night. If your campfire is too hot to touch, it’s too hot to leave.
  • If target shooting, please take all the proper precautionary measures to be fire-safe—select an area that is free of flammable materials and bring a fire extinguisher or water to extinguish any flames. Exploding targets and tracer ammunition are prohibited for use on all public lands in Wyoming per the year-round wildfire prevention restrictions.

Firefighter and public safety are the top priorities in wildfire management. If you operate an unmanned aircraft system (UAS), commonly called a drone, please remember that unauthorized UAS flights over or near a wildfire endanger the lives of pilots, firefighters and members of the public.

Year-round restrictions include not using or discharging fireworks; not discharging a firearm using incendiary or tracer ammunition; and not burning, igniting or causing any tire, wire, magnesium or any other hazardous explosive material to burn. You also must have properly installed spark arresters on any off-road vehicles to legally operate them on BLM-administered public lands.

Preventable wildfires threaten lives, property and precious resources every year. Firefighters are needed more than ever to keep Americans safe, so please do your part to prevent human-caused wildfires.