Governor Polis is Ordering Temporary Fire Restrictions


As of August 18, 2020, the Pine Gulch Fire in Mesa and Garfield Counties has burned over 93,000 acres, making it the third largest fire in Colorado history. The Grizzly Creek Fire in Garfield County has burned over 29,000 acres, forced the closure of Interstate 70, and is threatening critical infrastructure. Grizzly Creek is the number one priority fire in the nation as of August 18, 2020. The Williams Fork Fire in Grand County has burned over 6,500 acres and the Cameron Peak Fire in Larimer County has burned over 14,000 acres. Over 470 homes have been evacuated across the State as a result of the Pine Gulch, Grizzly Creek, Williams Fork, and Cameron Peak Fires. 

Given these facts, conditions of extreme fire hazard exist across the State. The State’s top priorities are protecting life, property, and protecting and reopening Interstate 70. This Executive Order temporarily restricts fires in the State of Colorado, with limited exceptions, to reduce the risk of new fires and protect health and safety.

B. I order temporary fire restrictions in all counties in the State of Colorado in accordance with this Executive Order, for the duration of this Executive Order. C. For purposes of this Executive Order, fire restrictions include the following:  

i. Any outdoor fire except as specifically allowed by Section II.D. of thisExecutive Order, including but not limited to campfires, warming fires, and charcoal grill fires;

ii. Fireworks;

iii. Explosives;

iv. Smoking, except in an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least six (6) feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable material;

v. Operating a chainsaw without a United States Department of Agriculture or Society of Automotive Engineers approved spark arrester properly installed and in effective working order, a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher kept with the operator, and one (1) round point shovel with an overall length of at least thirty-five (35) inches readily available for use; vi. Welding or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame except in cleared areas of at least ten (10) feet in diameter and in possession of a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher;

vii. The use of tracer ammunition or any ammunition with an incendiary component, and the use of novel explosive shooting targets with Tannerite or other similar substances, that would explode and create heat or fire upon impact; and

viii. Any other activity that poses a significant risk of starting a fire. 

D. The fire restrictions in this Executive Order do not include fires in:

i. Liquid-fueled or gas-fueled stoves;

ii. Fireplaces contained within buildings;

iii. Charcoal grills at private residences;

iv. Constructed, permanent fire pits or fire grates within developed camp and picnic grounds or recreation sites;

v. Portable stoves, lanterns using gas, jellied petroleum, pressurized liquid fuel, or a fully enclosed (sheepherder type) stove with a one-quarter (0.25) inch spark arrester type screen; and

vi. Fires in connection with prescribed or controlled burns for agricultural or irrigation purposes along ditches located within and completely surrounded by irrigated farmlands where such burning is necessary for crop survival and where specific written approval has been granted by the sheriff of the county where the prescribed burn will occur.

E. Pursuant to C.R.S. § 24-33.5-1223, county sheriffs shall enforce this Executive Order and all State forest fire laws.


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