Department of Natural Resources urges Independence Day fire safety

June 28, 2012

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 6 a.m. June 28, 2012

Though rain dominated the early fire season, state Department of Natural Resources officials said a fire risk is still present, and Independence Day revelers should practice fire safety on state lands.

Discharing fireworks is illegal on Tiger Mountain State Forest near Issaquah and all Department of Natural Resources-protected lands. In addition, a burn ban for Tiger Mountain State Forest and other Department of Natural Resources lands goes into effect July 1. The summertime ban runs through Sept. 30.

“The major wildfires in Colorado and New Mexico remind us how destructive they can be to our homes and lives,” state Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark said in a statement. “We urge everyone to exercise caution with any fire-related activities this holiday weekend.”

Since January, the agency surprised about 143 fires responsible for burning 872 acres on Department of Natural Resources-protected lands.

Records show the fire danger is highest on Saturday and Sunday afternoons, as outdoor enthusiasts head into state forests. Fires commonly start from unattended campfires, fireworks, faulty vehicle or motorcycle mufflers, careless disposal of cigarettes and outdoor burning.

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