OLYMPIA, Wash. – The Washington State Parks department says that campfires in all state parks will be prohibited until further notice to help prevent human-caused wildfires during the hot, dry season on both sides of the Cascade Mountains.
Campers will be allowed to use devices that allow for control of combustion, including propane and liquid gas stoves appropriate for camping and backcountry use; propane barbecue devices that do not use solid briquettes; propane or pressurized white gas warming devices that have a shield or base; and solid fuel citronella or other candles in a metal bucket or glass container.
In prescribing the ban on campfires, Washington State Parks is following the lead of the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), which Tuesday notified the public of a ban on all outdoor burning on lands protected by DNR. That agency has fire protection responsibility on approximately 50 percent of state park lands. The State Parks ban on open fires and campfires in all state parks is intended to minimize public confusion and cooperate in DNR’s effort to prevent wildfires.
DNR has said that significant demands are being placed upon fire suppression resources from regional and statewide firefighting efforts. Wildfires are often ignited by lightning, but most fires are caused by human activities, including carelessly tended outdoor fires.