Stage 2 fire restrictions take effect this week in Pinal

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Stage 2 campfire and smoking restrictions will take effect 8 a.m. Wednesday on state and federal lands in Pinal County due to increased fire activity and dry conditions.

Agencies entering the higher level of restrictions include the Bureau of Land Management Gila District and Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management for State Trust Lands.

The following activities are prohibited, according to the state Department of Forestry and Fire Management:

• Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire, charcoal, coal, or wood stove fire, including within developed campgrounds or improved sites. Pressurized liquid or gas stoves, lanterns, and heaters with shut-off devices are allowed. When using a portable stove, make sure the area is clear of grasses and other fine fuels.

• Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building. Smoking is prohibited in all federal buildings.

• Discharging a firearm, including target shooting, except while engaged in a lawful hunt pursuant to state, federal, or tribal laws and regulations.

• Mechanical and industrial prohibitions: operating any internal combustion engine off designated roadways, welding or operating acetylene or other torch with an open flame, and using an explosive.

• Fireworks and exploding targets are never allowed on federal and State Trust Lands.

The restrictions will also take effect Wednesday on federal and state lands in Cochise, Graham, Greenlee, Pima and Santa Cruz counties, according to the Arizona Interagency for Wildfire Prevention.

Violations of restrictions are punishable by fine, imprisonment or both. Violators may be held personally responsible for reimbursement of wildland fire suppression costs.

Along with state and federal fire restrictions, local municipalities may also have their own restrictions in place. Residents and visitors should check with their respective county and municipal governments for information on fire restrictions in those jurisdictions.

National Park Service and U.S. Fish and Wildfire Service units across Arizona maintain year-round fire restrictions.

For information about agency restrictions, general fire information and prevention tips, contact the land management agency you plan to visit at WildlandFire.az.gov.