Colorado governor signs executive order for a 30-day ban on campfires and other open fires as wildfires burn across the state

Published: Aug. 18, 2020 at 3:23 PM MDT|Updated: Aug. 19, 2020 at 10:50 PM MDT
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DENVER (KKTV) - Colorado Gov. Jared Polis said it is believed that three of the four major wildfires burning in Colorado may have been caused by human activity, leading to his announcement of a 30-day open fire ban statewide.

You can hear the governor’s announcement at about 29:40 in the video at the bottom of this article. The executive order was signed late Wednesday night and goes into effect on Thursday.

The open fire ban includes campfires, fireworks, and “other open sources of ignition.” The full list of fire restrictions can be read in the order.

People will still be able to do home BBQs, public grills, camp stoves, and approved covered fire pits, depending on local regulations. The public is encouraged to check with their local county officials on fire bans in place. Click here for a list of fire restrictions for each county.

“I’m grateful to the more than 2,000 men and women who are on the ground and in the air fighting these fires and working to protect our communities and Colorado’s beautiful natural resources,” Polis said. “Colorado is no stranger to wildfires like this, and we have proactively prepared for this season. While these fires are making it more difficult for people to enjoy our great outdoors, Coloradans must continue taking the necessary precautions to protect themselves and others, such as wearing masks and following social distancing requirements. Much like with COVID-19, we all have a role to play in ensuring we are taking steps to prevent fires moving forward.”

Polis said Monday that the Grizzly Creek Fire was the number one fire priority in the nation. As of Wednesday night, the wildfire had grown to more than 28,000 acres. The Pine Gulch Fire Wednesday surpassed the 2018 Spring Creek Fire in size, becoming the second-largest fire in Colorado history at 125,252 acres. The Cameron Peak Fire is burning on mostly federal land and as of Wednesday night had burned 15,738 acres. The Williams Fork Fire started on Saturday and is burning 15 miles southwest of Fraser on mostly federal land. After exploding over the weekend, firefighters have slowed its growth some, with the fire gaining just 100 acres since Monday. As of Wednesday night, the fire had burned 6,726 acres with 3 percent containment.

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