Arlene Perea, Forest Service spokesperson, said that they have not had any fires in the district, but that unattended campfires are something she wants people to be aware of.
“Something we want to continue to highlight is right now campfires are illegal,” she said. “People will get cited if caught having a campfire. It’s just simply too hot and dry right now. We’re still a ways away from monsoons and we definitely need to be careful with that and try to avoid fires at all costs. So, abandoned campfires just continue to be an issue.”
Crystal Powell, District Ranger for Cibola National Forest Service, reiterated Perea’s sentiments and said the state is still under Stage 2 fire restrictions and high fire danger.
“We have had a few incidents with visitors having charcoal grill fires and campfires and some being left unattended,” she said. “Luckily, they were able to be extinguished before they spread. It has been pretty much the same situation every week.”
There was an unattended charcoal grill fire at Doc Long Picnic area in the East Mountains on Sunday June 7, according to the Bernalillo County Fire Department’s Facebook page. BCFD Brush-30 Wildland Crew responded to the fire. When asked for more info regarding the fire, spokesperson Janessa Ruiz would not provide specifics, directing The Independent to file a public document request.
On June 5, Bernaillo County Fire was dispatched to a vehicle fire off of Interstate 40 near mile marker 173, according to James Villalobos from the BCFD.
“The driver … he stated that he was driving, and he saw the smoke started coming out of the engine compartment. When he pulled over a fire started right away,” he said.
After the man called 911, the fire spread to the rest of the vehicle, Villalobos said. “Crew pulled an attack line and quickly extinguished the fire.”
The cause of the fire is undetermined, and no injuries or exposures were reported, Villalobos said.
Wendy Mason, Wildfire Prevention and Communications Coordinator for New Mexico State Forestry, said they do not have any new fire updates this week.