Caution urged during agricultural burning season | SteamboatToday.com

Caution urged during agricultural burning season

Firefighters in West Routt County battle a small wildfire near the Carpenter Ranch, just east of Hayden.

— Once again this year, Routt County officials are urging members of the agricultural community to use caution when undertaking burns.

Colorado law allows agricultural burning for "the open burning of cover vegetation for the purpose of preparing the soil for crop production, weed control, maintenance of water conveyance structures related to agricultural operations and any other agricultural cultivation purposes."

Other debris, such as slash piles, cannot be burned under the law, and those needing to burn other debris should contact their local fire departments for permits.

For agricultural burns, landowners are asked to call Routt County Communications at 970-879-1090 before starting the burn. This helps prevent false alarms related to wildfires.

Fire officials also requests that people take the following precautions when burning.

• Know the weather forecast for the day, because erratic winds and low humidity can quickly push a fire out of control and into dry fuels.

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• Do not burn on windy days.

• Notify neighbors so they are not alarmed by the smoke and flames.

• Have a shovel and water nearby in case the fire needs to be put out.

• Clear and remove debris down to bare soil around utility poles and fences to prevent damage from the fire.

• Dig a fire line where the fire should stop to keep the fire from burning beyond the planned area.

• Never leave a fire unattended.