Forest Service alarmed by abandoned fires

SUBLETTE COUNTY – The United States Forest Service in western Wyoming issued a release on June 4, stating concern over the amount of abandoned campfires in Bridger-Teton National Forest.

According to numbers provided, there were 21 abandoned campfires discovered as of June 2. That’s compared to seven the year before and three at the same time in 2019.

“People just aren’t thinking of fire safety at this time of year,” public affairs officer Mary Cernicek said. “It’s like folks assume because it’s spring they don’t need to worry about putting out their campfires. It is early but it only takes a couple of days of warm dry weather to dry things out.”

Some of the abandoned campfires were found smoldering while others escaped its fire ring. Fires have been discovered by patrollers as well as reported by visitors. Those responsible can be subject to citations and fines, and may even be responsible for costs of putting fires out.

“All too often people don’t intend to start wildfires, yet they leave campfires unattended or don’t completely put them out,” Cernicek said.

Abandoned campfires or wildfires can be reported by calling 307-739-3630 or 911.