PITKIN COUNTY, Colo. — With wildfires in surrounding counties, Pitkin County finds itself once again in extreme fire season. To prevent human-caused fires in the community, Pitkin County Sheriff Joe DiSalvo announced Stage 2 fire restrictions on Tuesday.
The fire restrictions go into effect at midnight Wednesday, June 23, and supersede the existing Stage 1 restrictions that have been in place since last Wednesday.
> Video above: Colorado wildfires: Collom Fire update, Stage 1 restrictions
The Pitkin County Sheriff's Office said this restriction will be in effect until further notice. It will cover all state, public, private and incorporated and unincorporated land within Pitkin County.
“A Stage 2 fire restriction essentially prohibits all fires, whether you’re in an established campsite or on the back deck at your house,” DiSalvo said. “My deputies will enforce this fire restriction and will issue citations to those who violate it."
All residents and visitors who violate fire restrictions will face criminal penalties, including fines of $500 (first offense), $750 (second offense) and $1,000 (third offense), and possible jail time.
Fire restrictions apply to:
- Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire or stove fire.
- Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle, building or area cleared of all combustible materials.
- Use of fireworks including sparklers, rockets, exploding targets and tracers or incendiaries.
- Using an explosive. This includes but is not limited to fuses or blasting caps.
- Welding or operating an acetylene or other torch with open flame with a current permit or letter of authorization.
- Operating or using any internal combustion engine (e.g. chainsaw, generator, ATV).
- Operating a chainsaw without an approved spark arresting device properly installed and in effective working order, and chemical pressurized fire extinguisher (8 oz. capacity by weight or larger and kept with the operator) and a round point shovel with an overall length of at least 35 inches that is readily available for use.
The public is encouraged to visit www.pitkinemergency.com for more information about current fire restrictions.
SUGGESTED VIDEOS: Animals and Wildlife