Larimer County is under outdoor fire restrictions until at least Aug. 31.
The county commissioners on Tuesday approved the restrictions, which apply to unincorporated portions of the county, on the advice of emergency managers and the Larimer County Sheriff’s Office.
The county is forecast to have continued hot weather with little moisture, said Justin Whitesell, emergency operations director.
The northern part of the county is experiencing drought conditions, he said. The threat of wildfire is growing.
The county’s order on fire use, sometimes called Stage 1 restrictions, are not the same as a fire ban.
Under Stage 1 restrictions, the following are prohibited:
- Open fires, including camp or cooking fires
- Smoking in open areas, including trails, parks and open spaces
- Fireworks and fireworks displays
- Incendiary devices including sky lanterns, exploding ammunition, exploding targets, and tracer ammunition
- Outdoor welding, except under specific conditions
Fire use that is not restricted under the county’s order includes:
- Fires contained in permanent, stationary masonry or metal fireplaces, such as those found in developed campgrounds
- Camp stoves and grills using gas or pressurized liquid
- Fireplaces or wood stoves inside permanent structures
- Fires in commercially operated wood and/or charcoal grills designed for cooking
- Charcoal-fired grills when used at a private residence and located on a non-combustible surface of at least 10 feet in diameter
- Internal or external combustion engines with spark-arresting devices
- Welding and other torch work within an enclosed building
The U.S. Forest Service has imposed Stage 1 fire restrictions within the Canyon Lakes Ranger District of the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests and Pawnee National Grassland.
Stage 2 restrictions, which are essentially a fire ban, have been imposed in other counties.
Larimer County’s restrictions could be extended or tightened depending on conditions, Whitesell said.