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Beach bonfires will not be making a comeback at Port San Luis this summer due to concerns over fire safety.

The decision was made after considering factors such as wind and the risk of fires.

Old Port Beach, also known as Affleck Dog Beach, used to allow bonfires from mid-March through November.

However, the Port St.

Louis Harbor District paused this activity during the pandemic and has now decided against bringing back the bonfires.

According to Cal Fire SLO (San Luis Obispo), the fire risk was deemed unnecessarily high.

There were reports of people cooking on the beach and then disposing of hot coals improperly, even dumping them in the grass before leaving.

Such incidents raised concerns and led to the Harbor District’s decision to reject a firing permit program that was under consideration.

Although the fire risk is not excessively high, officials consider it a potential danger, especially given the presence of dry brush-covered hillsides near the beaches.

This situation is different from other areas on the Central Coast where bonfires are allowed, as a little bit of wind and heat can quickly escalate a fire on the hillsides.

While some locals express sadness at the absence of beach bonfires, they acknowledge that there are still plenty of enjoyable activities at the beach, even without fires.

People can still appreciate the beach and its beauty after sunset, without the added risk of fires.

The Harbor District estimates that it would cost $30,000 per year just to patrol the area during the evenings, further contributing to the decision against reinstating beach bonfires at Port San Luis.

Despite the disappointment for bonfire enthusiasts, safety concerns and the associated costs have led to the decision to prioritize fire prevention and beach preservation in Port San Luis this summer.

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