RIO RANCHO, N.M. (AP) — Sandoval County authorities are advising residents and visitors engaged in outdoors recreational activities to be alert for unlawful shooting on the mesa west of Rio Rancho and in woodlands along the Rio Grande.

Sheriff's Lt. Keith Elder says the Sheriff's Office is regularly called to investigate reports of people shooting guns in prohibited areas and calls the situation a "crucial public safety concern" because of danger to hikers, ATV riders and equestrians from stray or ricocheting bullets.

A county ordinance prohibits discharging firearms along the woodlands between the Sandia and Santa Ana reservations and in the mesa area between the Rio Puerco on the west and the cities of Rio Rancho and Bernalillo on the east.