With the heat of summer baking plants into tinder, state and local agencies are enforcing burn bans and firework prohibitions around the state and particularly in Moab, where the local fire department said that many of the fires in the city earlier this month were human-initiated.
“As of June 1, open burning in Utah is PROHIBITED, including yard waste and trash fires,” the Moab Valley Fire Department said in a Facebook post Monday, June 24.
The fire department said that exceptions are granted via permit for some agricultural burns in the unincorporated parts of the county. Moab has a burn ban that is effective year-round.
The City of Moab published a post on Facebook Tuesday, June 25 regarding bans on fireworks, in lead-up to Independence Day next week. The post specified that fireworks are prohibited on public trails and paths inside city limits, in the vicinity of Pack Creek and Mill Creek, and within 20 feet of all structures.
“Anyone who violates the city fireworks ban is subject to a fine of up to $1,000 and possible imprisonment,” read the post from the city. “Please help protect yourself and your neighborhood!”
The post also described the definition of “Class C dangerous explosives” as defined in state code. That category of fireworks, which includes firecrackers, bottle rockets, roman candles and others, are illegal without a permit.
“Any fireworks that fly, explode or travel more than six feet off the ground are also banned within Moab City limits,” the post read.
The city passed a fireworks ban this week that created an exception for fireworks allowances on city property; small fireworks (i.e. those that do not fall under the category of Class C dangerous explosives) will be permitted on the baseball fields on Center Street.
The Division of Natural Resources released a press release earlier this month on the topic of fire mitigation, as well. “It is always the responsibility of the person lighting and tending the fire to take the needed precautions and prevent its escape,” the division said in a press release. “A permit or notification call does not relieve a person from liability if the fire gets away or damages someone else’s property, so good judgment is advised.”