Firefighters are asking agricultural property owners to be safe and follow a permitting process if they’re going to burn this spring.
The Durango and Los Pinos fire protection districts have dealt with two out-of-control burns since last weekend. And Durango firefighters responded Wednesday night to a fire in the SkyRidge subdivision where someone was burning trash, carpet and other items to clean up the property, even though open burning is not allowed in city limits.
“The burning of these products is prohibited in the county and the city due to air-quality rules and regulations of the state of Colorado,” the fire department said in a news release.
Property owners who reside in the Durango Fire Protection District are required to obtain an open-burn permit, which can be done on the department’s website or by dropping off a print application between noon and 4:30 p.m. Monday, Wednesday or Friday at 104 Sheppard Drive.
On the day of the burn, property owners must call dispatch at 385-2900 and give a permit number, and they’ll be advised of any conditions that would limit a burn, such as red flag warning days.
Burn piles are restricted to 4 feet by 4 feet, and the material must be limited to natural vegetation.
“The state of Colorado does not allow the burning of coated or treated wood products, tree stumps, cut lumber, construction debris, plastics, tires, rubber and other chemical products,” the Durango fire news release says.
Those who have land zoned as “agricultural” by the La Plata County Assessor’s Office are not required to obtain a burn permit, but it is greatly appreciated by the fire department “and the community” if they contact dispatch to report the location and times of agricultural burns, the Durango fire department said the release.
No open burning is permitted in Durango city limits other than recreational fires less than 3 feet by 3 feet and no more than 2 feet tall. These fires must be attended at all times and cannot occur during red flag warning days.
“Fires must not be conducted within 25 feet of a structure or combustible material unless they are ‘portable outdoor fireplaces’ (i.e., grills, etc.) and these must be 15 feet from a structure or combustible material,” the release says.
“We ask your cooperation with this process,” the fire department said. “Our goal for our community and crews is to minimize the possibility of an open burn getting out of control and thus limit or eliminate property damage, injury and possible loss of life.”