The Saguache County Commissioners and Sheriff Mike Norris have declared an open fire ban ordinance for Saguache County effective June 19.
The following activities are hereby deemed to be “open fires” for the purposes of this Ordinance and are subject to the ban:
A. Building, maintaining, attending or using an open fire to burn trash, debris, fence rows, or vegetation, any campfire, warming fire, or charcoal grill
B.    Lighting of fireworks/explosives of any kind of any kind.
C.    Disposing of any burning material or material hot enough to cause the ignition of weeds or grass such as cigarette or cigar butts or hot coals except in a fireproof receptacle designated for such disposal.
D.    Smoking, except in an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least 3 feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials.
E.    Welding or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame except in cleared area of at least 10 feet in diameter and in possession of a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher with a minimum rating of 1A kept with the operator, and one round point shovel readily available for use.
F.  Operating a chainsaw without a USDA or SAE approved spark arrestor installed and in effective working order, a chemical fire extinguisher with a kept with the operator, and a round point shovel.
(2)   The following person(s) and acts shall be exempted from the provisions of this  Ordinance:
A.  Persons with a valid permit or authorization from the Saguache County Sheriff that specifically authorizes the otherwise prohibited act.
B.  Any federal, state, or local officer or member of an organized rescue or firefighting force, in the performance of an official duty.
C.  Any fires contained within a liquid fuel or gas stove, fireplaces within buildings, or propane grill fires.
D.  Campfires or bonfires required on religious ceremonies, for which a valid written permit/authorization has been granted in advance by the Saguache County Sheriff.
E.  Fires in an established fire grate in a developed Forest Service/BLM campground (this allowance is so that the County will be consistent with the Forest Service/BLM Stage 1 fire restrictions).
F.  Persons using a portable fire pit with an approved screen are exempt Prohibition #1.