Utah’s state forester announced a ban Tuesday on target shooting in some rural areas in the first-ever initiative of its kind.
Dick Buehler said the ban will take effect Wednesday for specific target-shooting sites on public or private land in Cache, Davis, Summit and Utah counties.
The forester says much of Utah remains tinder dry and ready to burn. Buehler previously banned the use of exploding targets, fireworks and steel-jacketed bullets on unincorporated private and state lands in Utah. Steel-jacketed bullets can give off sparks when they hit rocks.
Buehler held a news conference Tuesday to unveil a new interactive map at utahfireinfo.gov that shows the restrictions.
Five major wildfires were burning on national forests or range lands in Utah on Tuesday, half as many as a week ago. Fire crews were keeping the active fires largely contained.
Buehler’s order comes as another hot and dry week settles over Utah, raising the fire danger.
With sparks from bullets blamed for 21 of Utah’s wildfires this year, Gov. Gary Herbert and legislative leaders last week empowered Buehler to restrict activities outside of cities and towns, except for on federal lands that make up much of Utah. The U.S. Forest Service says it isn’t prohibiting shooting. The Bureau of Land Management didn’t respond Tuesday.
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