Fire restrictions begin tomorrow in Garfield County
- Campfires are only allowed within designated fire grates in developed campgrounds (i.e. a metal, in-ground containment structure -- fire pans and rock campfire rings are not acceptable)
- No fires of any type including charcoal outside of developed areas
- No smoking except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site or in a barren area free of vegetation
- No use of explosive materials, including explosive targets
- No welding or operation of an acetylene or other similar torch with open flame except from an area that has been cleared of vegetation
- No operation of any internal combustion engine without a spark arresting device properly installed and in working order
As we head into the heart of the dry season, Stage 1 fire restrictions will begin tomorrow in Garfield County on all unincorporated private lands and Bureau of Land Managment-administered lands — meaning folks will have to be careful where and when they light their next match.
“People in Garfield County understand what fires season is, and we typically see good compliance with fire restrictions, which helps reduce the number of human-caused fires,” Garfield County Sheriff Lou Vallario said in the BLM press release.
Fire managers base their decisions about fire restrictions on specific moisture measurements in vegetation and other risk factors.
“Despite a good snowpack year, recent hot and dry weather has created high fire danger at elevations below about 8,000 feet,” said Gloria Tibbetts, Acting Field Manager for the BLM Colorado River Valley Field Office.
With Fourth of July coming up, fireworks are always prohibited on BLM, National Forest National Park Service Lands, but temporary restrictions are also in place on campfires, smoking, and other flame-inducing activities.
The BLM Grand Junction Field Office and Mesa County have had fire restrictions in place since June 23.
Based on local conditions, the White River National Forest is not initiating fire restrictions at this time. Fire officials caution that there is still a fire danger in these areas, and remind people to be careful with fire.
Fire restrictions on these lands will be in place until further notice, states the press release. Violation of federal fire restrictions is punishable by a fine of not more than $100,000 or imprisonment for not more than 12 months or both. Those found responsible for starting wildfires will also face restitution costs of suppressing the fire.
For more information about fire restrictions in these areas, visit http://gacc.nifc.gov/rmcc/dispatch_centers/r2gjc/ or call the Colorado River Valley Field Office at (970) 876-9000.