On Friday, four area national forests will implement Stage 1 campfire and smoking restrictions in an attempt to lessen the danger of human-caused wildfire. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, it’s the earliest the bans have gone into effect in almost 10 years.
Flagstaff authorities say two recent wildfires within the city limits, near lower Switzer Canyon, were the result of possible arson. According to the Arizona Daily Sun, the first fire started Friday and the second began Saturday. Police say the proximity of the fires — about 150 yard apart — and timing were suspicious. Authorities are searching for a suspect they questioned and released after the first fire. He was last seen wearing a black hat and a camouflage jacket while carrying a tan backpack and large knife.
Over the weekend, crews battled the first major wildfire of the year in northern Arizona. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, just days before the fire broke out both of the state’s U.S. senators urged the federal government to fast-track thinning projects.
The City of Flagstaff will implement stage 1 fire restrictions on Fri, April 18 at 8 a.m. These restrictions ban on all fire pits and other open flame devises in the city. The use of charcoal grills and other devices with an on-off switch are still permitted.Under stage 1 restrictions, smoking is banned on the Flagstaff Urban Trail System and disc golf courses at Buffalo Park, Thorpe Park, McPhearson Park and McMillan Mesa Park. According to the city, the Flagstaff Police Department is also expanding homeless-camping patrol efforts to prevent human-caused wildfire.
Extremely dry conditions have pushed up fire season by about a month on northern Arizona’s forests. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, the Flagstaff community is already taking precautions.
A group of brewers and distillers in the state are behind reforming an alcohol law. As Arizona Public Radio’s Justin Regan Reports, it’s part of a large bill that loosens regulations on the production of beer and spirits.