Open Fires Banned at 2 Parks

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Orange County parks officials Thursday banned open fires at two regional parks that border wilderness areas because of extreme fire danger.

"Because of all the wildfires in the state and the fact that it's one of the driest years, we're doing this as a precaution," said Tim Miller, county parks superintendent.

The ban applies to O'Neill Regional Park in Trabuco Canyon and Caspers Wilderness Park near San Juan Capistrano. Both are popular for day use and camping.

Camp stoves fueled by gas, propane or butane may be used. Prohibited are any open fires. In the past, a ban has been enforced during hot weather and Santa Ana wind conditions.

In mid-April, officials throughout much of Southern California opened fire season a month earlier than usual.

This year, more than 5,000 acres have burned in Orange County, said an Orange County Fire Authority spokesman.

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