(Phoenix) – The Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Department will initiate its annual fire ban beginning Tuesday, May 29. “To provide park visitors the opportunity to enjoy campfires over Memorial Day weekend, Parks has delayed the implementation of their annual fire ban as long as possible. However, for the safety of park visitors and park resources, the fire ban will be put in place right after the holiday,” stated Maricopa County Supervisors’ Chairman Max Wilson, District 4.
“Over the past couple of weeks the Valley has experienced high winds. If we continue to experience high winds, the park supervisors have been authorized to issue a park specific temporary fire ban to ensure public safety and protect the park. Information on temporary fire bans will be posted on the Parks website,” added Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Director R.J. Cardin.
The fire ban includes the use of campfires, fire pits and charcoal grills; however, it is still acceptable to use gas/propane grills in designated areas such as the ramada areas, semi-developed and developed camping sites and along the shoreline at Lake Pleasant Regional Park. Violation of this park rule, Rule 113, may result in a citation. A date to lift the fire ban has not been designated and will be determined by the amount of rain Maricopa County receives during the monsoon season.
There are ten Maricopa County parks that will be affected by the fire ban: Lake Pleasant Regional Park, White Tank Mountain Regional Park, Adobe Dam Regional Park, Buckeye Hills Regional Park, Estrella Mountain Regional Park (excludes turf area), San Tan Mountain Regional Park, Usery Mountain Regional Park, McDowell Mountain Regional Park, Cave Creek Regional Park, and Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area.
Smoking in the parks is still permissible, but all park users are strongly encouraged to be responsible in their use and ensure that all cigarettes are properly extinguished and placed in trash receptacles. If you have any questions regarding the fire ban, call the Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Department at (602) 506-2930, or visit www.maricopa.gov/parks.
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About the Maricopa County Parks & Recreation Department: From hiking on a barrier-free trail, to horseback riding along a creek, Maricopa County Parks offer visitors the best of the Sonoran Desert. At approximately 120,000 acres, Maricopa County is home to one of the largest regional park system in the United States. All trails within the Maricopa County Park System are for non-motorized use only. The ten parks in the system circle the metropolitan area and all are within a 45-minute drive from downtown Phoenix. For more information on the park system, visit www.maricopa.gov/parks or phone (602) 506-2930.