Beginning immediately, Stage 1 fire restrictions are in place on public lands managed by the U.S. Forest Service (USFS), Pike and San Isabel National Forests located Chaffee, Clear Creek, Custer, Douglas, El Paso, Fremont, Huerfano, Jefferson, Lake, Las Animas, Park, Pueblo, Saguache, and Teller Counties, Colorado. Restrictions will remain in effect until they are rescinded.
Fire danger is very high and USFS fire managers anticipate a high potential for large fires.
1) Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire, campfire, barbecue, grill or stove fire. 36 CFR § 261.52(a).
EXCEPT: Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire in constructed, permanent fire pits or fire grates within developed recreation sites and 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 is permitted.
2) 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. 36 CFR § 261.52(d).
3) Operating a chainsaw without a USDA or SAE approved spark arrester properly installed and in effective working order, a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher with a minimum rating of 2A kept with the operator and one round point shovel with an overall length of at least 35 inches readily available for use. 36 CFR § 261.52(h).
4) 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 with a minimum rating of at least 2A. 36 CFR § 261.52(i).
5) Using an explosive. 36 CFR § 261.52 (b).
Even with the restrictions, visitors should be aware of weather conditions and be careful with the use of fire outdoors. Visitors should check with their local U.S. Forest Service office or go to the web at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/psicc/ Fire Information to learn about specific restrictions.
Fire Safety Message
• Make sure that you can have a campfire and obey all fire restrictions.
• Keep a bucket of water and a shovel near the campfire
• When putting a campfire out, drown it with water, stir the fire with dirt and more water until all the fuel is cold to the touch. Never leave a fire until it is out cold
• If you do not have water, use dirt. Mix enough dirt or sand with the embers. Continue adding and stirring until all material is cool. Remember, DO NOT bury the fire as the fire will continue to smolder and could catch roots on fire that will eventually get to the surface and start a wildfire