County commission lifts fire ban

Officials urge public to be vigilant

Increased moisture levels have prompted the Montezuma County Commission to lift the county fire ban, effective immediately.

Burning fields and ditches are again allowed, but dispatch must be notified beforehand at 565-8441. No burning is allowed during red flag warning days.

County emergency planner Paul Hollar praised the public for respecting the previous fire ban, and warned people to stay vigilant regarding burning.

“There were no negligent issues, but there are still very dry areas in the county, especially around Cortez and in the southwest corner,” he said. “There is still potential for fires.”

BLM and the national forest do not have fire bans. La Plata County has had good moisture and never enacted a fire ban.

Officials urge landowners burning weeds and fields to be responsible by informing dispatch, keeping water nearby, having enough manpower to maintain and monitor the fire, and making sure it’s completely extinguished.

“One thing we want people to know is to not hesitate to call for assistance if you feel it is getting out of control,” Hollar said.

Failing to contact dispatch regarding a planned burn, or burning during a red flag day can lead to a fine of up to $1,000.