- Associated Press - Friday, April 1, 2016

ALAMOGORDO, N.M. (AP) - Officials on the Lincoln National Forest have elevated the fire danger rating to high due to a combination of windy, warm weather and persistent drought.

The new rating will be reflected on signs across the southern New Mexico forest starting Friday.

Officials say the rating indicates that grass and other fine fuels can ignite easily and fires can start quickly from most causes. Unattended campfires also are more likely to escape.

Under the current conditions, spark arrestors are required on chainsaws and off-road vehicles. Parking in grass is discouraged and the tossing of cigarettes and use of fireworks is prohibited.

There currently are no fire restrictions on the forest, but officials say conditions are monitored daily to determine if and when changes need to be made.



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