Level 1 Fire Restrictions Go Into Effect Friday In Los Alamos County


Los Alamos Fire Department’s Fire Marshal Wendy Servey announced today that she is enacting Level 1 Fire Restrictions for Los Alamos County, effective Friday, Oct. 23.

Servey said the decision was made in partnership with LAFD’s Wildland Division today after reviewing the potential threat of wildfire, especially in light of the on-going COVID-19 pandemic emergency.

“We’ve had a very dry summer and never received the expected moisture we typically see from the monsoons,” Servey said, “Even though it may be unusual to have fire restrictions in place in the Fall, it’s a necessary step. Forests are dry and we are now at greater risk for fires to grow quickly and spread. It is imperative that our local citizens and visitors take every action to reduce our risk of wildfire.”

The following are NOT ALLOWED during Level 1 Fire Restrictions:

  • Outdoor smoking except in designated areas.
  • Use of fireworks is prohibited on County, or public lands, and open spaces.

Exemption:  Professional firework display or pyrotechnics requires an approved permit by the Fire Marshal’s Office. 

  • Open burning is prohibited on private, County, public lands and open spaces. The burning of trash or rubbish is prohibited. No open burn permits will be issued by the Fire Marshal’s Office during fire restrictions. 

Exemption:  Prescribed burns for wildland management by an authorized federal, state or local agency requires approved permit by the Fire Marshal’s Office. 

  • Bonfires are prohibited. No bonfire permits will be issued by the Fire Marshal’s Office during fire restrictions.
  • Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire, charcoal, coal or wood stove, including fires in developed or undeveloped campgrounds on County land, specifically Camp May Campground and open spaces is prohibited.

Exemption (allowed):  Recreational fires are allowed in a constructed fixed fireplace, ring or grate no bigger than 3 feet in diameter and 2 feet tall and at least 25 feet away from structures with a spark arrestor at private residences. (one- and two- family dwellings). 

  • Portable outdoor fireplaces, heaters, chimineas located 15 feet away from structures recommended.
  • Outdoor gas stoves or grills fueled by NG or LPG fuels with shut-off valves, located 3 feet from all structures.
  • Charcoal fires in contained barbeques or permanently constructed grills, rings, grates in improved site County parks are permitted. 

An exemption does not absolve an individual or an organization from liability or responsibility for any fire started from the exempted activity. 

“We need the community to support these restrictions and report observations of any prohibited activities that are an emergency by calling 911,” Servey said.

Servey said residents are welcome to contact her office at 662-8305 for non-emergency calls and any questions about the restrictions.

Residents can also follow the USFS and NM State Forestry Restrictions when traveling outside of Los Alamos. Visit www.nmforestry.com or https://firerestrictions.us/for more information.