PORT ANGELES — Since July 23, fire officials have responded to five fires across the North Olympic Peninsula with about 25 acres burned on federal public lands, according to a joint press release from the Olympic National Park and Olympic National Forest
“With quick response times and great help from partners, including Washington State Department of Natural Resources, wildland firefighters were able to contain these fires before they grew into larger incidents, the release said.
“While still under investigation, fires like these are frequently started due to human-caused ignitions.”
Common ways people inadvertently start fires are by the illegal use of fireworks, unattended or illegal campfires, improper vehicle or equipment use and negligently discarded cigarettes.
Fireworks are always prohibited on federal public lands including Olympic National Forest and Olympic National Park and campfires are currently banned on federal public lands across the Olympic Peninsula. Cigarette debris should always be deposited in some type of ashtray.
“These preventable incidents expose firefighters, pilots, and the public to unnecessary risk as well as the potential for devastating effects of uncontrolled wildfire on natural resources,” the release said.
Even small fires require many resources such as fire engine crews, hand crews, and helicopters to extinguish, and thus impact agencies’ ability to respond to other larger incidents occurring across the region, the release pointed out.
For more information, see www.nifc.gov, inciweb.nwcg.gov, www.waburnbans.net, www.fs.usda.gov/olympic and www.nps.gov/olym.