JOHN DAY - The Malheur National Forest is ramping up its fire restrictions effective Monday, July 20.

Rob Batten, fire management officer, said both the north and south zones of the forest will be at an Industrial Fire Precaution Level (IFPL) 2.

That means that the following can be done only between the hours of 8 p.m. and 1 p.m.: power sawing (except at loading sites), cable yarding, blasting, and welding or cutting of metal.

"The change in the weather has increased the risk of wildfire and put us into a high fire danger," said Batten. "Therefore, we are asking visitors to be extremely cautious with anything that could start a fire.

"Historically, unattended campfires, or campfires that have not been completely extinguished, have been our biggest human caused reason for wildfires. Campers and visitors to the forest are urged to make sure their campfires are completely put out and not left unattended."

Updated information will be posted on the Forest website at (www.fs.fed.us/r6/malheur) as changes are made, or call 541-575-3000 for further information.

To report a forest fire, call Malheur National Forest Dispatch at 541-575-3112.

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