Fire restrictions have been eased on the Malheur National Forest.

All three ranger districts moved to an Industrial Fire Precaution Level of II Tuesday. Phase B of public use restrictions are still in effect.

The IFPL regulates industrial activities such as logging. It does not regulate any recreational or firewood cutting activities on the Malheur National Forest. Under IFPL II, the following may operate only between the hours of 8 p.m. and 1 p.m. local time: power saws except at loading sites; cable yarding; and welding or cutting of metal.

Under Phase B of the public use restrictions, following acts are prohibited on the Malheur National Forest:

1.Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire, charcoal briquette or stove fire, except within a developed recreation site.

2.Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable material.

3.Operating a chainsaw between the hours of 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Saw operators are required to have a shovel (8 inches wide, 26 inches in length), and fire extinguisher (minimum ABC 8 oz.) in their possession. A one-hour fire watch is required after saw operations cease. Generators are allowed when located in a location cleared of flammable material in an area at least 10 feet in diameter and approved spark arrestor.

4.Operating or using any internal or external combustion engine without a spark arresting device properly installed, maintained and in effective working order.

5.Possess or use a vehicle off National Forest System roads, except when parking in an area devoid of vegetation within 10 feet of the roadway.

For more information, call 541-575-3000. For current public use restrictions and Industrial Fire Precaution Levels, call 541-575-3113.

The Oregon Department of Forestry’s Central Oregon District has also reduced its regulated-use closures in effect for public activities to a 1-8 p.m. restriction for high-risk activities such as mowing dry grass and chain saw use. When traveling in forested areas, a fire extinguisher or gallon of water and a shovel are required. All open burning is prohibited. For more information, visit odfcentraloregon.com.

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