MONTEREY, Calif. - Due to extreme fire danger, the Monterey Peninsula Regional Park District has implemented a ban on all smoking and use of open flames on all district owned parks.
Park Rangers are authorized to issue citations.
With record low rainfall, parks like Mill Creek Redwood Preserve, Palo Corona Regional Park, Garland Ranch Regional Park, Cachagua Community Park and Frog Pond Wetland Preserve are tinder dry and ready to burn.
The lack of rain and serious drought conditions have resulted in an extremely dry winter. Monterey is experiencing conditions right now that would usually be seen in late August.
MPRPD said it is working with local firefighting authorities and the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) to prevent fires.
In a recent press release, CAL FIRE noted that in the first three weeks of January they have already responded to nearly 300 wildfires that have charred over 700 acres. In a normal year, the department only responds to about 50 fires that all together would char a little over 100 acres.