Tag Archives: Apache County

Campfire & Smoking Restrictions to be Implemented

Photo by Kelly Kramer

Photo by Kelly Kramer

A very important message from our friends at the U.S. Forest Service:

Springerville, AZ – May 15, 2013—Campfire and smoking restrictions will be implemented at 12:01 a.m. on Thursday, May 23 in Apache and Navajo Counties, Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests, and within local fire districts located in both counties.

White Mountain area cities, counties, and federal agencies, along with commercial partners that make up Northeast Arizona Public Information System (593 JIC), and the White Mountains Fire Restrictions Coordination Group have been collectively planning for months to implement timely fire restrictions for public lands within the White Mountain area.

With extremely dry vegetation, the risk of wildland fire is extremely high. People who enjoy public lands in Apache and Navajo Counties can reduce the risk of fire by practicing fire safety and by adhering to fire prevention restrictions. The criteria officials consider before implementing fire restrictions include current and predicted weather, fuel conditions, fire activity levels, and available resources. Due to increasing fire danger, the following fire restrictions are deemed necessary to prevent human-caused wildfires and protect public health and safety:

  • Fires, campfires, charcoal, coal and wood stoves are allowed in developed campgrounds only.
  • These restrictions limit smoking to within enclosed vehicles, buildings, or in developed campgrounds.
  • Pressurized liquid or gas stoves, lanterns, and heaters that can be turned off are allowed.

The fire restrictions will remain in place until lands within Apache and Navajo Counties receive significant precipitation.

White Mountain visitors are reminded that some campfire restrictions are always in effect, such as in forested areas within city limits of most northern Arizona communities. Additionally, fireworks are never allowed on National Forests. For more information about restrictions on public lands by calling (928) 333-3412 or toll free 1-877-864-6985 or visit (www.593info.org), and also the NEW interagency website: (Firerestrictions.us) created to inform residents and visitors about fire restrictions and closures across the South-west area.

Forest and White Mountain visitors are encouraged to be fire safe and show their commitment to wildfire prevention by going online and taking Smokey’s pledge.

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Research Study of the Health Effects of the Wallow Fire on Apache County Residents

Smoke from the Wallow Fire hovers over a meadow near Tal-Wi-Wi Lodge in Alpine, Arizona.

Apache County homeowners may receive mail from Cornerstone Strategies, Incorporated concerning a study of how last year’s Wallow Fire affected residents. The Apache County Department of Public Health and the UCLA School of Medicine are studying the effects of the Wallow Fire on community health one year after the fire.

“It’s important that we consult with everyone who lives in Apache County, full-time or seasonal, so that we have a better understanding of how our citizens were affected. The residents of Apache County suffered a great loss during the summer of 2011 and this survey is an efficient way to involve our community in efforts to understand the health implications of our wildfire,” said Kellie Monterrosa, Division Manager of Public Health Emergency Preparedness for Apache County.

David Eisenman, UCLA physician and public health researcher who is conducting this research is hoping for a high response rate. “It’s important that we hear from everyone who receives this survey whether they live here full time or part time and whether they feel they were affected or not by the Wallow Fire. The more people who respond, the more accurately this survey will reflect the views of the whole community.” Approximately 1,400 homeowners have been randomly selected to participate in a survey, which takes about 20 minutes to complete. They will arrive by mail during the month of July. Reminder mailings will be sent to people who do not respond to the first mailing within two weeks.

For more information, please contact Kellie Monterorosa, MBA, Apache County Department of Public Health 928-333-6444; 928-245-1171 (cell) or David Eisenman, MD, at UCLA School of Medicine 310-794-2452.

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