City institutes emergency fire ban
Published: Thursday, July 19th, 2012
Tinder-dry conditions and a plea from the Custer Volunteer Fire Department chief prompted the Custer City Council to institute an emergency fire ban at a special meeting of the council last night. The ban mirrors the ban already passed by the county, limiting virtually every kind of fire within city limits, except for propane grills. The complete text of the ban can be found in the legal section of this week’s Chronicle.
At its regular meeting Monday night, the council heard from both fire chief Joel Behlings and fire department member Bill Bell, who stated due to fire conditions that would push into the extreme category in the next few days, a fire ban is warranted. Behlings pointed to the recent Highlands Fire as an example of what can happen when fire erupts in an area with structures. He said areas in the city limits such as Boot Hill, Bavarian Hills Estates and Pageant Hill are in danger of facing the same fate if a fire erupts. Behlings added that a fire recently started in Custer from two-day old charcoal in a metal container, but was quickly contained.
Behlings said Custer County Sheriff Rick Wheeler is also concerned there is no specific fire ban in the city, which makes enforcement more difficult on his department’s end.
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