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No fireworks allowed in state and national parks for July 4th

July 3, 2012 |  2:47 pm

Amid the profusion of regulations that campers, picnickers and day hikers must keep in mind when visiting state or national parks for the Fourth of July, one simple rule is foremost: No fireworks. Ever.

With the wildfire season in full swing during this holiday week, park managers are emphasizing fire safety behavior. That means in the parks, campfires are allowed only in designated areas. And in national parks, such as Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, smoking is not allowed in areas where vegetation is present.

“There are always, always fires started somewhere from fireworks,” said Kathy Kirkpatrick, fire management officer at Santa Monica Mountains. “Most people feel like they are not holding fireworks if they have a sparkler in their hands, but they don’t realize that it is an ignition source. They don’t realize how easy it is to start fires in our dry grasses.”

MAP: Where to see Fourth of July fireworks

On property managed by the federal Bureau of Land Management—high desert areas such as Barstow, Needles and Ridgecrest and in the Mojave Desert--a permit is required for campfires and the use of a barbecue. As in the parks, fireworks are illegal on BLM land.

Teri Raml, BLM desert district manager, said the restrictions are necessary due to rising seasonal temperatures combined with dry vegetation.

“Historically, these conditions have fueled very large wildfires,” she said. “These fire restrictions are needed to reduce the wildfire threat to private property and the fragile desert ecosystem.”


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 --Julie Cart