Kirtland Air Force Base implements Stage III Fire Restrictions. Courtesy photo
KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE News:
KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE – The Sandia Ranger District of the Cibola National Forest transitioned Friday morning to Stage III Fire Restrictions. Kirtland officials are following their lead and implementing increased fire restrictions for the installation.
“Effective immediately, the installation will follow all restrictions listed in the Stage II and Stage III orders through July 15 or until conditions improve. My team will closely monitor and communicate any changes to these restrictions,” said Col. Richard Gibbs, 377th Air Base Wing Commander.
This means suspended access and operations in the wildland areas of the base precludes any type of explosive testing and heat/spark producing activities across the rural acreage of Kirtland. This includes training ranges – range activities are suspended.
Like the National Forest areas, Kirtland wildland areas have prohibitions on campfires, explosives, smoking (except in enclosed privately-owned vehicles); using fireworks or pyrotechnics; operating chainsaws or other equipment powered by an internal combustion engine; welding or operating torches with an open flame; operating any internal or external combustion engine without a flame or spark-arresting device. And of course, firing a firearm, air rifle or gas gun.
This suspension and restrictions will be in effect until July 15 or when conditions change, Gibbs explained.
“I realize this will have an impact on our training and operations, but the risk to our installation, our wildlands, and neighboring national forest and communities is too great,” he said. “We must protect our people, communities and resources. We will work with the Forest Service as conditions improve to ease restrictions.”
For more information on the restrictions for Stage II and Stage III from the Sandia Ranger District, Cibola National Forest and National Grasslands, visit https://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/cibola/alerts-notices.