Frequently Asked Questions
Here are answers to the most frequently asked questions about Fire Restrictions in general. More information about fire restrictions can be found in the Idaho Fire Restrictions Plan.
General Questions - Regardless of Stage
Federal, State, Tribal and private lands (outside of city limits and incorporated areas), which lie within the restriction area boundary.
You can see the restriction areas on our Fire Restrictions Finder webpage. If you have a specific destination in mind, like a state park or national forest, you can find fire restrictions for popular destinations on our Know Before You Go webpage.
The maximum penalty for violating a fire restriction order differs depending on the enforcement agency:
- The maximum penalty for violating a restriction order is $5,000 for
individuals and $10,000 for corporations and/or 6 months imprisonment. The maximum penalty would be imposed by the Federal Magistrate following a court appearance.
- Violation of the prohibited acts is punishable by fine of not more than $1,000 and/or imprisonment for not more than 12 months (Title 18 USC 1856, Title 43 USC 1701, Title 43 9212.4, and/or appropriate State laws).
State of Idaho
- County Sheriff responsible for enforcement of Idaho Code, could result in misdemeanor citation. Actual cost of fire suppression response may be billed to responsible party.
Bureau of India Affairs/Tribal
- State and county regulations and penalties apply. If you violate a fire restriction order results in a wildfire, you will also be liable for all suppression costs resulting from the wildfire including damage to property and resources. Criminal charges may also be imposed.
A developed recreation site is an area that has been improved or developed for recreation. A developed recreation site is signed as a privately owned commercial campground, tribal, or agency owned campground or picnic area.
No. Your public lands remain open for use. However, in the event of a fire, there may be temporary road or area closures associated with the incident to provide for public and firefighter safety.
Fire restrictions are managed through a collaborative interagency process under the Idaho Fire Restrictions Plan. This document outlines how cooperating agencies coordinate coordination efforts regarding fire restrictions and closures.
An interagency approach for initiating restrictions or closures helps provide consistency among the land management partners, while defining the restriction boundaries so they are easily distinguishable to the public.
Each restrictions area is encouraged to recruit any affected agency or landowner into restriction conversations whenever possible.
Idaho’s restrictions group includes representatives from the Idaho Department of Lands, the Bureau of Land Management, the USDA Forest Service, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs/Tribal representatives.
Fire restrictions and closures can be invoked on state, federal, and private lands under federal and state laws. Here are references to these authorities:
USDA Forest Service Authorities
- For Closures
- 36 CFR 261.52(e) – Going into or being upon an area
- For Restrictions
- 36 CFR 261.50 – Fire
- General that applies to both restrictions and closures
- 16 USC 551 and 18 USC 3559 and 3571 – Violation/Penalties
- 36 CFR 261.51 – Posting Requirements
Bureau of Land Management (BLM)
- Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (43 U.S.C. 1701, et seq.), Sections 302(b) and 301(a) 43, CFR, Part 9210 (Fire Management) 43, CFR, Part 9212 (Wildfire Prevention)
Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA)/ Tribal
- Forest restrictions and closures are issued by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and Agency Superintendent under authority established in 25 CFR 163.3, 25 CFR 163.28
State of Idaho, Idaho Department of Lands (IDL)
- Using Idaho Code (IC) 38-105 and 38-115 as the authority, the State Board of Land Commissioners developed supplemental rules and regulations that the Director of the Department of Lands, or his designated representative as per IC 38-102, is responsible to apply.
- The following rules supply direction for implementing Idaho Code:
- IDAPA 20.04.01.060 covers burning permits
- IDAPA 20.04.01.070 provides for area closures
- IDAPA 20.04.01.080 addresses the requirements for spark arresters during the closed fire season
- IDAPA 20.04.01.090 allows for invoking smoking limitations
- IDAPA 20.04.01.120 permits limiting activities to the least dangerous portion of the day
- Any restrictions implemented by the Director of the Department of Lands, or his designated representative, will apply to “forest land” and “range land” as defined in Idaho Code 38-101