With recent rain and snowfall and more expected, the U.S. Forest Service Thursday reduced the fire danger rating in the Angeles National Forest from Extreme to Very High, but restrictions on the use of fire in the forest remain in effect.

This week’s precipitation increased moisture in grasses and shrubs, said USFS spokesman Andrew Mitchell, but vigilance is still needed.

“Even though the threat of wildfire has been mitigated to Very High, the potential for a large fire remains,” Mitchell said. “Due to this, fire management officials have opted to keep the fire use restrictions in place. They will stay at there current levels until we receive additional precipitation causing fuel moisture to increase.”

The restrictions ban the use of camp fires or camp stoves or operating any welding torch with an open flame within the boundaries of the national forest. Smoking is prohibited, as is discharging a firearm, air rifle or gas gun outside an authorized public range and lighting or discharging any fireworks.

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