Stage I fire restrictions on Bureau of Land Management lands within Mesa, Eagle, Garfield and Pitkin counties, as well as portions of southern Routt County and northern portions of Delta and Montrose counties, started on May 24, according to the BLM.
The ban does not include Grand Mesa National Forest.
Stage I temporary restrictions include:
• Campfires are only allowed within designated fire grates in developed campgrounds. Fire pans and rock campfire rings are not acceptable.
• No fires of any type, including charcoal, are allowed outside of developed areas.
• No smoking except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreational site or in a barren area free of vegetation.
• No use of explosive materials.
• No welding, or operating an acetylene or other torch with open flame, except within an area that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials at least 20 feet on all sides of the equipment.
• No operation of any internal combustion engine without a spark arresting device properly installed and in working order.
Fireworks are always prohibited on BLM, National Forest and National Park Service lands.
Gunnison County has issued a fire restriction for all-ownership lands.
The Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forest has issued a fire restriction for the Gunnison Ranger District only. This district includes parts of the Gunnison National Forest surrounding Crested Butte and Gunnison, as well as areas around Lake City and Curecanti National Recreation Area within the county.
Violation of federal fire restriction is punishable by a fine of not more than $100,000 or imprisonment for not more than 12 months or both. Those found responsible for starting wildfires also will face restitution costs of suppressing the fire, according to the BLM.
Residents who plan to bun on their private lands should contact their local fire districts before burning.
More information on fire bans and restrictions across the state can be found at www.coemergency.com.