The city of Montrose is joining a long list of counties and municipalities that have banned the sale and use of fireworks due to severe drought and fire conditions.
The city council says it will formally impose the ban at it’s next meeting on Monday, June 18. But, the city still plans to hold its municipal fireworks display on Sunset Mesa over Riverbottom Park on the 4th of July.
Below is the entire news release from the city:
Montrose, CO – City councilors will vote next Monday, June 18, to ban the sale and use of fireworks within city limits after worsening fire conditions in the region have prompted fire and city officials to rethink issuing sale permits to wholesale fireworks vendors in the city.
Normally residents would be seeing fireworks stands springing up throughout Montrose in preparation for the Fourth-of-July holiday. Due to critical drought conditions and massive wildfires to the south, Montrose Fire Protection District Fire Chief Tad Rowan said the time had come to be more proactive with multiple red flag days and active fire restrictions in place in the region.
“Because there is no relief in sight, we felt it would be prudent to help out our neighboring jurisdictions by restricting the sale of fireworks,” Rowan said Monday.
Rowan said as of now, the community fireworks show held on the Fourth-of-July on Sunset Mesa over Riverbottom Park is still scheduled to take place after dusk.
Earlier this month the City Council received and approved the application for the annual show. The city deferred to the judgment of the fire district is not only looking to ban the sale but to ban all use of fireworks within city limits.
Rowan said prior to launch day, July 4, his team will analyze the conditions at the launch site, fire restriction severity, local fire activity and weather forecasts to determine whether the community show will take place.
Rowan said the MFPD had issued four permits to vendors looking to sell fireworks in the city. Rowan said those vendors “were completely understanding” after notifying them that drought conditions had forced the MFPD to change policy.
Throughout the region, jurisdictions, municipalities and federal agencies like the BLM have increased fire restrictions and warnings in response to the 416 fire actively burning north of Durango. With the summer travel season in full force, some fire restrictions have been raised from stage one to stage two. Rowan said some of these fire restrictions could even go further to stage three in some areas.