Stage I Fire Restriction went into effect this morning for all portions of the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests that lie in Boulder, Gilpin, Jefferson, Park and Clear Creek counties due to a forecast of dry, warm conditions. The fire restrictions apply to all of the Boulder Ranger District and the Clear Creek Ranger District.
The Stage 1 Fire Restrictions limit where and what type of fires visitors can have, along with other restrictions. They are in place until October 1, 2017, or rescinded, whichever is first. See the Boulder Ranger District order and map and the Clear Creek District order and map for details.
Within the fire restriction area, forest visitors cannot:
· Build or maintain a fire or use charcoal, coal, or wood stoves, except within a developed recreation site (e.g., campgrounds where fees are charged).
· Smoke, except in an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while in an area at least three feet in diameter cleared of all flammable materials.
· Operate 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.
· Weld or operate 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.
· Use explosives, including fireworks.
· Discharge a firearm EXCEPT a person possessing a valid Colorado hunting license lawfully involved in hunting and harvesting game.
Violation of any of these provisions of Stage 1 Fire Restrictions could result in a maximum fine of $5,000 for an individual or $10,000 for an organization, or imprisonment for more than six months, or both. If responsible for causing a wildfire, one could be held accountable for suppression costs of that fire.
Forest Service staff will continue to monitor the situation and consider a variety of options to address conditions, including additional restrictions if weather remains dry and lessening or rescinding restriction if a rainy weather pattern starts.