Sublette County lifts fire restrictions
Fire Danger still Moderate; Campfires permitted
August 9, 2007
Sublette County has joined the Bridger-Teton National Forest in lifting fire restrictions, according to Sublette County Fire Warden T.J. Hunt.
In backcountry locations, wood and/or charcoal campfires are allowed only in established fire rings.
Forest users are required to attend their campfires at all times. All campfires must be completely extinguished and should be cold to the touch before campers leave the site. Only dead and down wood may be used as firewood.
Hunt said that the fire restrictions have been lifted due to the recent moisture we have received. However, the restrictions could go back into effect if things heat up again.
We attended a meeting recently with fire personnel for Sublette County and the topic of protecting homes in and near the forest in wildfire situations came up. With the lull in the fire season, and the nice weather we are still having, now is a good time for homeowners who live in the forest-urban interface to take a good look at the situation around their home and consider if things need to be done to create a buffer and protect their property should a fast-moving wildfire come in the vicinity. Firefighters will do all they can to protect and save structures in a wildfire emergency, but homeowners should prepare in advance and make their property as defensible as possible.
Homes in Hoback Ranches, in particular, are a great concern to those people whose job it is to protect public safety and try to handle fire emergency situations. Hoback Ranches was said to be the #1 community at risk from wildfire in Wyoming, according to fire officials.
Firefighters looking at how to protect neighborhoods, especially those subdivisions tucked in forest interfaces. They plan ahead and categorized structures regarding their defensibility and what it will take their personnel and resources to protect a given structure: No protection needed, little effort, maximum effort, and non-defensible structure. While they will do everything they can to protect structures, firefighter safety is also top priority.
It is the homeowner’s responsibility to make their home and property defensible. In the heat of a fire emergency situation, firefighters will do what they can to protect all structures, but they won’t be able to do a lot if the fire is moving fast. “We don’t have the time to chop down trees and clean people’s yards for them,” Hunt said. Homeowners are strongly urged to do their share and create a defensible space around their homes if they live in areas where wildfires may threaten their property.
Fire danger is currently rated as Moderate on the Bridger-Teton National Forest. Campers still need to be very careful with campfires, cigarettes and anything that may produce a spark. Fireworks are prohibited at all times, year-round, everywhere in Sublette County and on the Bridger-Teton National Forest. Fire season is not over.