Yavapai County to implement county-wide fire ban beginning May 5

Yavapai County seal. (Courier file photo)

Yavapai County seal. (Courier file photo)

Yavapai County Board of Supervisors Chair Mary Mallory on May 2 signed the Interim Fire Prohibition Order, which bans using fireworks and implements Stage 1 fire restrictions across all four fire zones in Yavapai County starting at 8 a.m. May 5, a county news release reported.

Fire Ordinance Zones include the Northern, Central, Eastern and Southern zones of Yavapai County, which include the following cities and towns: Prescott, Prescott Valley, Dewey-Humboldt, Mayer, Cordes Junction, Black Canyon City, Congress, North Wickenburg, Peoples Valley, Yarnell, Wilhoit, Cottonwood, Sedona and Camp Verde, as well as those municipalities’ unincorporated areas.

The fire ban will stay in effect “until the risk has diminished and there is agency consensus that restrictions may be lifted,” the county’s release stated.

Prohibited activities, per the release, will include:

• Selling or using fireworks;

• Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire or campfire, except at a developed recreation site or improved site;

• Smoking, except in an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site or while stopped in an outdoor area at least 3 feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials; and

• Operating or using any equipment with an internal or external combustion engine without a spark-arresting device properly installed, maintained and in effective working order, per County Ordinance 2020-2.

“I would like to ask all residents to be alert to the fire danger present in our county,” Mallory stated in the release. “[P]lease respect the prohibitions and take precautions to avoid accidentally igniting a fire. One spark is all it takes to cause a devastating wildfire.”

Added Yavapai County Emergency Manager Ashley Ahlquist, “Instituting a fire ban is not something we take lightly. [B]ut with such an early start to fire season and multiple active fires in the region, this is the time of year where the benefits of a fire ban far outweigh the hardships.

“I have made this recommendation to the Board because of the need to protect lives, our homes and the natural resources we all enjoy. As a resident of Yavapai County, I appreciate everyone doing their part.”

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