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October 21, 2016

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Boulder County fire ban to go into effect

High temperatures and low moisture have
increased the fire danger

Boulder County, Colo. - A fire ban will go into effect on Saturday, Oct. 22, 2016 at 8:00 a.m. Sheriff Joe Pelle is enacting a fire ban due to high temperatures and low moisture.
The fire ban will be in effect for the mountain areas of Boulder County.

The mountain area includes all unincorporated areas west of Highway 93, Broadway Avenue, and Highway 36 (North and South Foothills Highways and Broadway Avenue in the City of Boulder) including Rabbit Mountain Open Space and west of Rabbit Mountain Open Space to Highway 36.

The fire ban PROHIBITS:
• Building, maintaining, attending, or using an open fire, campfire, or stove fire. This includes charcoal barbecues and grills.
• Smoking, except in an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials.
• Operating a chainsaw without a USDA or SAE approved spark arrester properly installed and in effective working order, a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher kept with the operator and one round point shovel with an overall length of at least 35 inches readily available for use.
• Welding or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame except in cleared areas of at least 10 feet in diameter and in possession of a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher.
• Using an explosive.

The fire ban ALLOWS:
• Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire in constructed, permanent fire pits or fire grates within developed recreation sites and on private lands along with the use of portable stoves, lanterns using gas, jellied petroleum, pressurized liquid fuel or a fully enclosed (sheepherder type) stove with a ¼” spark arrester type screen.
• Developed recreation sites allow fire in constructed, permanent fire pits or fire grates.

The fire ban does not affect open fires within incorporated cities and towns; however residents must comply with applicable ordinances and regulations in their respective cities and towns. The fire ban will be in effect until the sheriff finds that the hazardous conditions have subsided.

For current fire and shooting restrictions for United States Forest Service properties, go to the following website:

For current fire restrictions in Eldorado Canyon State Park, go to the following website:

State statutes authorize counties to impose a fire ban “to a degree and in a manner that the board of county commissioners deems necessary to reduce the danger of wildfires within those portions of the unincorporated areas of the county where the danger of forest or grass fires is found to be high based on competent evidence.”

Anyone found in violation of the fire ban may be convicted of a class 2 petty offense and may be subject to a $500 fine, in addition to any possible civil penalties. Higher fines may be imposed for subsequent offenses.