By Miriam Raftery
Photo: Otay fire caused by target shooting on BLM land
Effective immediately, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management has banned recreational shooting g on all BLM lands in San Diego’s East County and the South Coast areas for the remainder of fire season.
“Collectively our staffs have discussed our emerging potentially very dangerous fire season given the prolonged drought,” Clayton R. Howe, Battalion Chief with the BLM, wrote in an email sent to County Fire Authority Acting Chief Greg Griswold on May 23. “We have also sought to reduce the threat of wildfires related to recreational shooting on BLM Administered Public Lands located within your Units.”
Cal Fire Chief John Francois, in an e-mail sent to fire officials and community leaders across our region, stated that fire agencies now have the authority to enforce the restriction on shooting. “If you see anyone shooting, please contact your local law enforcement agency,” Chief Francois urged.
Robin Brailsford, a Jamul resident who has pushed for a ban on shooting after six fires in the Jamul area were linked to shooting on BLM lands, called the announcement “good news.”