Johnson County Adopts Partial Fire Ban

Johnson County's Commissioners.
Johnson County's Commissioners.

Johnson County's Commissioners have enacted a partial fire ban in the county, effective at 8am Thursday, July 17th.

County Fire Warden Rick Farris came before the commissioners at the request of Buffalo's Johnson County Fire District One Chief Colby Richins and Kaycee's Powder River Fire District Chief Steve Haines to seek the commissioner's approval of the ban.

Farris said the agencies he had spoken to were all on board with the ban.

Farris was asked if backyard fire burners were also banned, and he explained the county's position.

In the Resolution, trash fires are allowed under certain conditions and times; campfires ae allowed in an established fire ring; charcoal fires in closed grills are permitted; cutting torches, electric welders, and branding activities are also approved with cetain conditions; personal fireworks are banned.
Any person violating the resolution shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine not to exceed $100 or imprisonment in the county jail not to exceed 30 days, or both.

The resolution will become effective July 17th and will be in effect until amended or rescinded by the Johnson County Commission.

As written in the ban signed by Commission Chair Delbert Eitel on Tuesday, Resolution No. 502 reads, in part: “fires and open flames shall be allowed in improved areas only within the following parameters:

* Trash or refuse fires between the hours of 6pm and 8am, inside containers provided with spark arresters and located within a cleared area ten (10) feet in radius are permitted.
* Camp fires contained within a fire ring specifically established by the government entity or its agents and at an established campground.
* Charcoal fires within closed grills are permitted.
* Use of acetylene cutting torches or electric welders in cleared areas ten (10) feet in radius are permitted.
* Propane or open fire branding activities in cleared areas ten (10) feet in radius are permitted.
* DISCHARGE OF FIREWORKS IS PROHIBITED, except where allowed below. The term “fireworks” shall not be construed as being synonymous with “fireworks” under W.S. 35-10-201. As used herein, “fireworks” means any pyrotechnic or explosive device regardless of the quantity of explosive contained therein.
* Planned burning or group organized fireworks displays may be permitted to Johnson County residents provided they first obtain written permission from the Fire Chief of the corresponding Fire District.

Any individual responsible for man-made fires shall be held accountable for any and all suppression costs.
The area of fire control shall include all state and private properties within Johnson County except land located within incorporated areas, the forest service boundaries, or those managed by the Bureau of Land management (BLM), which shall be subject to any rules and regulations regarding fire restriction as imposed by the US Forest Service, BLM, or the incorporated municipalities.

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