Media Release—Friday, June 22nd, 2012
SARATOGA SPRINGS, UTAH—Due to extremely dry conditions and a heightened fire risk statewide, Governor Gary R. Herbert called on local officials today to do everything possible to minimize potential harm by exercising great caution regarding use of fireworks and firearms in their jurisdictions. He also expressed sorrow and concern for those impacted by today’s large fire in Eagle Mountain and Saratoga Springs.
“Our hearts are with those who have been impacted by fires across the state, and especially today in Utah County. Many thanks to all who have deployed to combat the flames and minimize the threat to human life and damage to structures. We will continue to do all we can to help on that front and I am confident our community and state will pull together to take care of the families who have suffered losses or been displaced,” the Governor said.
“The entire state is tinder dry right now and resources can only stretch so far,” added the Governor. “While we may not be able to prevent those fires caused by natural forces, we must do all possible to prevent human-caused fires, encouraging local jurisdictions to appropriately regulate use of fireworks and firearms if necessary. State agencies will continue to work proactively with local and federal partners in fighting current fires and preventing future flares, but in the meantime, let us also work together to protect life and property under these dry conditions.”
The Governor was briefed by the Dept. of Public Safety and emergency response agencies about the state of the current Utah County fire and state fire conditions just prior to a statewide conference call with county commissioners and mayors. During that conference call, the Governor relayed details from the earlier briefing and emphasized the State’s priority to protect human life, as well as property, the environment and the watershed. He concluded by calling on local officials to crack down on the inappropriate use of firearms, and to limit or ban fireworks as needed during this extremely dry season for the sake of public safety, health and welfare. The Governor has also issued a declaration formally calling on local elected officials take appropriate action to reduce fire risk across the state.