The Bureau of Land Management Spokane District is issuing fire restrictions in several eastern Washington counties including Chelan, Douglas, Grant, Adams, Kittitas and Okanogan counties. The restrictions went into effect at 12:01am Friday and apply to BLM land in the affected counties. Some of the activities prohibited under the restrictions are target shooting with the use of exploding targets and operating any type of motorized vehicle off developed roadways. Other counties included in the restrictions; Adams, Asotin, Benton, Columbia, Ferry, Franklin, Klickitat, Lincoln, Pend Oreille, Spokane, Stevens, Walla Walla, Yakima and Whitman.
The restrictions prohibit operation of motorized vehicles off of developed roadways which are defined as roads clear of flammable debris from berm to berm. Vehicles must be parked in an area without flammable vegetation.
Caution is advised at all times when operating motor vehicles on roads or trails with vegetation or high grasses, and due to fire hazard risk, the public is asked not to bring fireworks or exploding targets onto public lands at any time. The public is also asked to ensure that any campfires are completely extinguished and cold before departure from a camping area.
Under the restrictions, target shooting with the use of exploding targets (including Tannerite) is prohibited. Target shooters who start wildfires may be responsible for the cost of fire suppression. Wildfires caused by recreational target shooting in dry grasses have steadily increased over the last few years. BLM suggests ways to prevent these fires from starting is to ensure the 20 foot area around the target is free of dry vegetation, minimize the use of ammunition containing steel and avoid shooting in hot, dry and windy conditions.