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Tongass National Forest Lifts Fire Restrictions
However, warns conditions are still relatively dry


June 30, 2004

Ketchikan, Alaska - Restrictions on open fires outside of campgrounds and smoking outside of vehicles or cleared areas have been lifted on the Tongass National Forest effective June 29th.

"We have received moisture across the Forest and precipitation is forecast for the coming week. The Remote Automated Weather Station, or RAWS, data shows that our fire danger is currently moderate to low," said Charley Streuli, Tongass National Forest Staff Officer for Ecology, Forest and Fire Management.

"However, conditions are still relatively dry for Southeast Alaska, and it will take several more rainstorms to reduce fire ratings to comfortably low conditions," Streuli added.

Use of fireworks and operation of motorized equipment without a working spark arrestor are still prohibited on the Tongass National Forest under existing law, officials noted.

Catalytic converters in vehicle exhaust systems can also spark wildfires, and Forest officials urged everyone visiting the Forest to be extremely careful, and to follow all applicable laws and regulations.

Anyone responsible for a wildfire may face both criminal and civil penalties. Fines may reach $5,000 per incident. Both the costs of putting the fire out and the value of resources destroyed may be collected under civil codes.


Source of News Release:

US Forest Service - Tongass National Forest
Web Site


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