Phoenix, Arizona - Governor Doug Ducey joined the Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management and fire safety officials to urge all Arizonans to do their part in preventing wildfires.
“We all have a role to play in protecting our forests and communities and minimizing the risk of wildfires,” said Governor Ducey. “It’s important to be responsible and use common sense precautions to help prevent wildfires, like ensuring your fire is out cold before walking away and remembering it is illegal and dangerous to fly a drone near a wildfire. My thanks to firefighters across the state and everyone working to protect our people, pets and property.”
Wildfires ravaged close to 980,000 acres in Arizona last year, the second most severe year for total acres burned. Wildfires can start through lightning, campfires and more, and have devastating effects on air quality, wildlife, people and property.
“Firefighters and safety officials work hard every day to protect Arizona and our communities,” said State Fire Management Officer John Truett. “It’s important that we all do our part to support their efforts, help minimize the risk of wildfires, and protect one another.”
To help prevent fires, Arizonans are encouraged to:
Ensure trailer chains do not drag (any spark can start a fire);
Practice responsible outdoor recreation and ensure campfires, matches or cigarettes are out cold before walking away from them;
Be “fire wise” and protect your property by limiting the combustible material and vegetation within 100 feet of your house; and
Remember it is illegal and highly dangerous to fly a drone near wildfires.
Before delivering an outlook on the upcoming wildfire season, the Governor received a briefing from the Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management to discuss efforts being taken to limit the risk of wildfires.
Governor Ducey on March 9 signed legislation to help fight the threat of wildfires in Arizona while expanding opportunities for low-risk inmates in the state’s correctional facilities through the Arizona Healthy Forest Initiative.
The initiative is a joint program between the Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management and the Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry that provides resources for preventing wildfires by utilizing low-risk inmates to control vegetation that could contribute to wildfires. The skills obtained by inmates through the Healthy Forest Initiative will help prepare them for employment upon release while reducing recidivism across the state.