Wildfire Season Officially Starts Tuesday in Wash.

By Tom Banse

It may be hard to believe, but wildfire season officially starts on Tuesday (April 15) in Washington state. In Oregon and Idaho, there's a rolling start to fire precaution rules depending on local conditions.

Fire managers are looking ahead to a fairly "normal' wildfire season in Idaho and Washington this year. Drought-ridden central and southern Oregon though are classified at higher risk. Washington's Department of Natural Resources is sticking to its traditional April 15 start date to enforce summer fire rules on forest and rangelands statewide. Among other things, that means people working in the woods or clearing land need to have fire prevention equipment on hand. Fire crews across the inland Northwest have already been dispatched to numerous small wildfires this spring.

Public agencies have mostly completed the recruitment of seasonal wildland firefighters and started training. Some private contract wildfire crews may still be hiring, if you're looking for a tough summer job. 


NIFC Fire Potential Seasonal Outlook:
http://www.predictiveservices.nifc.gov/outlooks/monthly_seasonal_outlook.pdf

Washington DNR: Fire season starts April 15:
http://www.dnr.wa.gov/RecreationEducation/FirePreventionAssistance/Pages/Home.aspx

Previous coverage:
Federal government blazes ahead on wildfire suppression funding overhaul (BSPR, March 13):
http://boisestatepublicradio.org/post/interior-secretary-jewell-congressmen-visit-boise-tout-wildfire-suppression-funding-overhaul

'Normal' Wildfire Season Predicted for Idaho, Washington (BSPR, March 13):
http://boisestatepublicradio.org/post/idaho-should-have-normal-wildfire-season-thanks-recent-storms

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