Douglas County has elevated its fire restrictions to Stage 2, effective immediately.
The ban comes on the heels of a week that saw a four-acre brush fire break out in Highlands Ranch, the Lime Gulch Fire burn 498 acres in adjacent Jefferson County and a handful of other fires around the state.
Under the ban, the use of personal and professional fireworks is prohibited as is open burning of any kind; use of fires in chimineas, other portable fires or patio fire pits; and campfires at developed campgrounds or picnic areas.
Allowable activities are limited to the use of personal charcoal and gas grills, liquid- or gas-fueled fire pits or other gas- or liquid-fueled appliances.
Violation of any of the fire restrictions is considered a Class 2 petty offense and is punishable by up to a $1,000 fine. More information on fire restriction stages can be located at www.douglas.co.us.
While the Lime Gulch Fire is now at 5 percent containment, parts of Douglas County remain under pre-evacuation. Access to Nighthawk Hill is closed and the intersection of Colo. 67 and S. Platte River Road is only accessible to local residents.
Roxborough Village, Roxborough State Park, Roxborough Park subdivision, Waterton Canyon, the Ravenna subdivision and parts of Pike National Forest north of Highway 67 and west to Rampart Range Road are all being asked to be ready to go if asked.
While the Roxborough area is not under any kind of notice or order right now, the Douglas County Sheriff's Office is asking homeowners to consider what they might need to take should there be an actual evacuation.
In the event the fire comes too close, an evacuation order will be sent. Residents are being asked to use situational awareness, however, and if in immediate danger, not to wait for an evacuation order but leave immediately if conditions warrant doing so.
People are also being asked to refrain from calling 9-1-1 unless they have an actual, specific emergency.
To see a map of the area under pre-evacuation, click here.
Anyone with special needs should register with the Douglas County Emergency Management Special Needs Registry. This is a database of folks in the county with special needs who may require assistance in the event of a disaster. The information may also be used to assist emergency personnel and volunteers in providing assistance. Participation in the Special Needs Registry is voluntary.