FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) — If you were expecting to camp in one of California’s national forests this Labor Day weekend, you’ll need to make other plans.
The USDA Forest Service Pacific Southwest Region is announcing a temporary closure of all national forests in California in effect from Aug. 31 through Sept. 17.
The closure is intended to limit the number of people on public land in the event of an emergency, as well as limit the chances of a new fire starting, the Forest Service said, adding that any new fire has the potential to grow rapidly, potentially diverting already limited firefighting resources.
The following areas are not affected by the closure:
According to the U.S. Forest Service, more than 6,800 wildfires have burned 1.7 million acres across all jurisdictions in California, and the National Wildfire Preparedness Level (PL) has been at PL 5 since July 14, only the third time in the past 20 years that the nation has reached PL 5 by mid-July, indicating the highest level of wildland fire activity.