News Release

Forest Service Waives Campground Fees For Hurricane Katrina Survivors

Washington
September 3, 2005 -

The USDA Forest Service is taking another step to assist survivors of Hurricane Katrina by temporarily rescinding the fee requirement for campgrounds and the 14-day stay limit for camping on some National Forest System lands in the Southern Region. The normal fee range is $4.00 to $25.00 depending on the location.

The forests offering free camping include the Kisatchie National Forest in Louisiana, the National Forests of Alabama, the Ozark-St. Francis National Forest in Arkansas, the Ouachita National Forest in Arkansas and Oklahoma and the National Forests and Grasslands of Texas. In all, 106 campgrounds are open without charge to victims of Hurricane Katrina as they transition through these first weeks of the disaster.

Location information on the fee-free campgrounds will be shared through the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) and state and local assistance agencies. Individuals and families with communications capabilities can call their nearest USDA Forest Service office.

The USDA Forest Service efforts are a component of the active response efforts by USDA to provide immediate relief to displaced residents by providing food, water and housing. For a comprehensive overview of USDA efforts go to: http://www.usda.gov. More information on hurricane recovery activities through FEMA is available at http://www.fema.gov.