Due to the strain on firefighting resources from current local and state-wide firefighting efforts, as well as hot and dry conditions which are expected to continue, El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa has imposed Stage I Fire Restrictions for unincorporated El Paso County effective immediately.
El Paso County Ordinance 02-2 governing Stage I Fire Restrictions states the following:
Open burning and outdoor fires are prohibited UNLESS done within permanently constructed fire grates in developed campgrounds and picnic grounds.
The use of wood burning stoves and charcoal grills at private residences in areas cleared of all flammable materials is ALLOWED.
The sale or use of fireworks is prohibited.
Outdoor smoking is only allowed IF done within an enclosed vehicle or building OR done in a developed recreation site OR while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is clear of all flammable materials.
Maketa insists everyone remain vigilant in their compliance with the restrictions as our community faces challenging conditions which are likely to exist for an extended period. The tragedy in Black Forest and the ongoing recovery from the Waldo Canyon Fire are events which demonstrate the power and destruction of wild land fire. The sheriff's office will exercise a zero tolerance policy for those persons who violate the restrictions.