The annual seasonal ban on fires in Maricopa County Parks will begin Monday, May 8 — three weeks earlier than usual — due to heightened risk of wildfire, officials announced today. Meanwhile, a temporary ban is already in place for May 2-3.
“We typically try to wait until after Memorial Day weekend to implement our fire ban,” said R.J. Cardin, Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Director. “However, this winter the parks received an abundance of rain which produced a super bloom of wildflowers, thick brush, and ground coverage. This vegetation has now dried out, and conditions are ideal for wildfire ignition.”
And while unrelated to county parks, there have several wildfires in the North Phoenix-area already this year, including one near Anthem homes that fire officials said was human-caused.
The county-parks 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, according to a statement from the parks department.
Violation of this park rule, Rule 113, may result in a citation.
Temporary fire bans could be issued by park supervisors prior to the blanket ban.
In fact, because of the state Department of Environmental Quality’s High Pollution Advisory May 2-May 3, there is a temporary fire ban in all of Maricopa County’s regional parks on those days.