Arizona National Forest officers are cracking down on fire restrictions

Extra patrol officers are targeting Forest land to catch those not obeying fire restrictions.

Back in April, drought conditions and hot temperatures prompted fire restrictions for the Tonto National Forest.

Those restrictions include most types of fire or fire-causing activities, including campfires and target shooting.

Now uniformed patrol officers, called “LEO's” (Law Enforcement Officers) are actively making sure people follow the rules.

Fire Prevention Specialist Gregory Crawford patrols the area.

“While I’m on patrol, I’m scanning out to the left or to the right looking for any signs of smoke,” said Crawford.

Crawford says he catches around 40-50 people shooting targets every day – even though it’s against fire restrictions.

The officer said these restrictions are important to protecting the Forest land by preventing wildfires, while also protecting nearby campers and homes.

Fines for not following fire restrictions can exceed $5,000.

For a full list of restrictions, click here

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