Fire bans announced (a little late) in Boulder, Larimer County -- and JeffCo and Golden, too

It took the Fourmile Canyon fire and the Reservoir Road fire to convince Boulder County and Larimer County to put fire bans in place; click here to read about the former, here to learn about the latter. Kudos, then, to Jefferson County and Golden, which have prohibited burning prior to blazes that scorched hundreds or thousands of acres. Look below to get the particulars:

Jefferson County Sheriff's Office release:

Sheriff orders a fire ban for all areas of unincorporated Jefferson County

Jefferson County, Co. -- Effective on Tuesday, September 14, 2010 at 9 a.m., a fire ban will be implemented for all areas of unincorporated Jefferson County. These restrictions are intended to reduce the likelihood of human caused wildfires.

This temporary fire ban, dated and executed below, supersedes all previous fire restrictions and fire bans. This order applies to all lands in unincorporated Jefferson County, to include all federal lands.

Because of continuing high fire danger conditions in Jefferson County, the following activities are strictly prohibited:

1. Anything which produces an open flame or has the potential to create an uncontrolled fire.

2. Building, maintaining, attending, or using any fire to burn trash, debris, fence rows or vegetation, or any campfire or warming fire.

3. Use of charcoal or other open fires on any public or private lands.

4. Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, or while stopped in an area of at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all combustible material.

5. Operating a chain saw without a USDA or SAE approved spark arresting device properly installed and in effective working order, and having a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher of not less than eight (8) ounces capacity by weight, and possessing one large size pointed shovel with an overall length of at least thirty-six (36) inches. The extinguisher shall be with the chain saw operator. The shovel may be kept with the fueling supplies, but readily available for quick use.

6. Welding or operating an acetylene or other torch with an open flame, except within an area that is barren or cleared of all combustible material at least ten feet on all sides from the equipment.

7. Use of an explosive initiation system requiring a burning fuse line.

8. Permissible fireworks, as defined by Colorado Revised Statutes, 12-28-101.

Exemptions to this temporary fire ban are listed below:

1. Persons with a valid written permit from the Sheriff and/or the local fire department which specifically authorizes the prohibited act.

2. Any federal, state, or local law enforcement officer, or member of an organized rescue or firefighting force in the performance of an official duty.

3. Any fires contained within liquid fueled or gas fueled stoves.

NOTE: Burn permits issued and not executed prior to the effective date of this temporary fire ban shall not be authorized unless one of the exemptions listed above applies.

Exemptions to this temporary fire ban shall be granted within non-federal land only by the Sheriff, and/or the local fire department only if the proposed action is deemed by the Sheriff and/or the local fire department or district to be safe and mitigable. Individuals operating under any of the above exemptions shall take adequate measures to prevent uncontrolled fires. Possible measures include, but are not limited to:

A. Containers of adequate water or dry soil nearby.

B. Shovels, fire extinguishers, or other extinguishing agents nearby.

C. Coordination with the local fire department or district to be on scene or standby during the activity.

Pursuant to County Resolution CC 97-433, violations of these prohibitions, upon conviction, is punishable by a fine of not more than $600.00. Such act(s) violate section(s) 102.8 and 308.2.1 of the International Fire Code.

This temporary fire ban becomes effective at 9 a.m. on September 14, 2010, and shall remain in effect until superseded or rescinded.

Executed this 13th day of September, 2010 at 9 a.m.

City of Golden press release:

Golden Burning Restrictions

Golden, Colo. -- September 14, 2010 -- The Golden Fire Department is placing temporary restrictions on open burning in the city starting on Sept. 15. Due to the high wildland fire danger conditions in Jefferson County, the Sheriff has issued a temporary fire ban (stage 2 fire restriction) in all unincorporated county and federal lands in Jefferson County. As is typical during county fire restrictions, the Golden Fire Department follows suit.

Here are the specific restrictions implemented by Fire Chief John Bales in the City of Golden:

1. Recreational fires that are not contained in an enclosed non-combustible appliance or outdoor fireplace with a chimney or screening material are prohibited.

2. All outdoor fires or open burning to include bonfires is prohibited and will not be issued a permit.

3. Open flame torches and welding in wildfire risk areas is prohibited and will not be issued a permit except within an area that is barren or cleared of ALL combustible material and vegetation at least 10 feet in radius from the equipment and area of cutting or welding.

4. Supervised public fireworks displays are prohibited and will not be issued a permit.

Violations of these restrictions are punishable by a fine not exceeding $999 or imprisonment for a period of not more than 180 days, or by both fine and imprisonment, if convicted.

These restrictions are effective as of 8 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 15 and shall remain in effect until superseded or rescinded by order of the Fire Chief.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts