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Those Who Disobey Fire Bans Could End Up In Jail

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(credit: CBS)

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GALLERIES: COLORADO'S WORST WILDFIRES

BOULDER, Colo. (CBS4) – Wildfire season is so bad this year that some county leaders aren’t even warning anyone about firework restrictions — they’re just handing out tickets. And open fire bans are being put in place across the state.

Boulder police say those caught with illegal fireworks could possibly be arrested.

Greg Talley says the fire ban puts a stop to some beloved traditions.

“We’ve been to Chief Hosa for the last three weekends,” Talley said. “For kids especially sitting around the campfire roasting marshmallows and stuff, you don’t get the full experience of camping if you can’t do something like (have a campfire).”

Denver County has put Chief Hosa campground under a fire ban.

“We’re very serious about fires here and we’re not going to let them get out of control,” Chief Hosa manager Larry Rhoten said.

Rhoten cuts the dry grass and says the campground only allows propane and Coleman stoves.

“If you start a fire here you’re going to be escorted from the park. You’re going to lose all your money that you put into it, and we can call the police and they can come and find you if need be,” Rhoten said.

Jefferson County isn’t under a ban yet, but has fire and firework restrictions in place. Deputy Mark Techmeyer says anyone caught lightning or even holding an illegal firework faces up to a $750 fine.

“They’re absolutely vigilant in their daily patrols making sure people are following the restrictions,” Techmeyer said. “It doesn’t take much, a spark from a car can start a wildfire, so we’re serious about it.”

Talley cooks out on a small grill, sacrificing traditions to prevent heartache.

“You look at the Black Forest Fire. There’s over 100 houses burned. It takes money to rebuild. You’ve got to take the good with the bad when you live in Colorado,” he said.

Wildfire Resources

- Visit CBSDenver.com’s Wildfire Resources section.

- Read recent Wildfire stories.

Wildfire Photo Galleries

- See images from the most destructive wildfires (Black Forest, Waldo Canyon, High Park and Fourmile) and largest wildfire (Hayman) in Colorado history.

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