From our Walker Fire Chief
The Forest Service is banning campfires for land under its jurisdiction as of tomorrow at 5pm.
The WFPA is asking that you not have any campfires or warming fires or do any other sort of burning on your property until after the fire season ends which typically happens with the monsoon rains in July. We understand these fires are a tradition and it will be a sacrifice for some.
This is simply a request. We have no ban on private property in Walker until Yavapai County tells us we do and again, that has not happened yet.
The vast majority of wildfires are human caused, including campfires. The hope is that by limiting campfires now, before the fire danger escalates, it will reduce the total number of fires this year. Fighting wildfires requires large crews working in close contact which of course undermines the idea of physical distancing as means to reduce the spread of the
Coronavirus. If one person on a Forest Service crew contracts the virus, the Forest Service might have to pull that entire crew offline to quarantine. If a crew is forced to quarantine it greatly reduces the firefighting capacity in the area. It should be obvious that this is a suboptimal outcome.
Also, because neighbors often report smoke even in raining season and our volunteers respond to all calls. Given the times it’s just better if we do not expose them to anymore risks than we have to. If there is a wildfire in Walker, the Forest Service will come to help but it is in our interest to do what we can now to reduce the number of fires we have this year. While we take fire ban instructions from the county we are asking that you consider not having any camp fires or warming fires or do any other sort of burning on your property until after the fire season ends which typically happens with the monsoon rains in July.
Thank you for your consideration.