The good news for campers this Fourth of July holiday weekend is that for the first time in years there will be no fire restrictions and campfires will be allowed. There are still rules in place concerning fireworks.In a news release, Mesa County Emergency Manager Andy Martsolf said fuel conditions are favorable enough to avoid fire restrictions on public lands this weekend. While moisture levels in large fuels are much higher than in previous years, officials do urge campers to exercise caution, good judgment, and responsibility with campfires.

Fireworks remains a separate issue. Chris Farinetti, Upper Colorado River fire management officer says people using fireworks should avoid fine fuels and seek out private property with plenty of protections from quick ignitions. Farinetti says:

"At no time should anyone be using fireworks on land manged by the federal government."

Here are some key things to remember when it comes to fireworks.

  • The use of fireworks on federal land is illegal
  • No one  under the age of 16 can purchase or possess fireworks
  • Any devices or components that, when used or ignited, project or disburse any metal, glass, or brittle plastic fragments are illegal. Examples of illegal fireworks are cherry bombs, roman candles, firecrackers, bottle rockets, shells and rockets, M-80s and M-100s, and helicopters.
  • A good rule of thumb: anything that explodes or leaves the ground is most likely illegal
  • Anyone  who violates the laws pertaining to the sale, possession, and use of fireworks commits a class 3 misdemeanor and faces up to $750 in fines, six months in prison, or both
  • Approved fireworks include cylindrical or cone fountains, wheels and ground spinners, illuminating torches and colored fire, dipped sticks and sparklers, toy propellant or toy smoke devices, trick noise makers, and snake or glow worms