Fire restrictions eased in unincorporated areas of Routt County

Stage 1 restrictions begin Wednesday

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— The Routt County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday morning decided to ease fire restrictions.

Effective at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, the Stage 1 restrictions will allow charcoal grills and campfires within approved fire grates.

The decision affects state land and land in unincorporated parts of Routt County. In the coming weeks, municipalities also will consider going from Stage 2 restrictions to Stage 1 restrictions.

“I wouldn’t say we’re out of the woods yet, but we’re definitely making up for the lack of moisture in the spring,” Routt County Emergency Management Director Bob Struble said Tuesday.

The U.S. Forest Service already has moved to Stage 1 restrictions for the Routt National Forest and the southern Medicine Bow National Forest. Bureau of Land Management land still is under Stage 2 restrictions.

The following remain prohibited under Stage 1 restrictions:

■ Fires outside developed, maintained campgrounds or picnic areas

■ Explosives

■ Smoking, except within 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 material

■ Welding or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame

■ Operating or using any internal or external combustion engine without a spark-arresting device properly installed, maintained and in working order

For more information, call the Routt County Sheriff's Office at 970-879-1090 or the Routt County Office of Emergency Management at 970-870-5551.

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247 or email mstensland@SteamboatToday.com

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