Put fire safety first! Make a checklist for your weekend adventure.

Motorcyle on Reiter Foothills Trail
Before you go out to ride your dirt bike, take the time to be sure your bike has a US Forest Service-approved spark arrester. Photo: Jessica Payne/ DNR

As you gear up for outdoor escapades this sun-filled weekend,  make sure you have information to be fire safe. All of us are reminded of the importance of fire safety when we see images of the devastating wildfires in central Washington.

What can a kayaker from Wenatchee or an ORV-rider from Olympia do to prevent forest fires?

Well, for starters…make sure you are aware of anything that may cause a spark. Wildfires can start quickly from many sources including dragging tailpipes, fireworks, and sparks from your dirt bike’s engine. Make sure you know the following fire safety tips:

1- Be aware of your tail pipe. It gets so hot it can start a fire. Keep your vehicle’s exhaust system away from dry, grassy areas.

2- Leave the fireworks at home. Not only could they start a wildfire, but they are illegal to discharge on DNR-managed land.

3- Tell stories by the moonlight tonight….or just make sure you know these 5 campfire safety tips.

4- Two words — spark arrester. Heard of it? If not and you own a dirt bike or quad, read this immediately.

5- Put this number into your cell phone…just in case: Report a Wildfire 800-562-6010.

Dense smoke billows from the Taylor Bridge Forest Fire 2012.
Be sure to put fire safety at the top of your list this weekend. Photo: DNR

There are many ways people can inadvertently start a wildfire. So what’s a ‘type A’ weekend warrior to do? Consider changing your destination to avoid areas fire danger is extreme.

People who recreate in Washington State are natural stewards of the landscape. Step up this weekend and watch out for un-manned campfires, hot engines, and people who didn’t get the memo about fire safety.

ALERT: Commissioner of Public Lands, Peter Goldmark, announced yesterday that wildfire risk across the state is extremely high and the public should be extra cautious about fire safety this weekend.


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