Fires: What You Can Do To Help

We've all seen and heard the news about wildfires in Colorado this summer, both large and small. The High Park fire west of Ft. Collins had consumed more than 87,000 acres as of June 27, and the Waldo Canyon fire near Colorado Springs has led to evacuation notices for more than 32,000 people. 

But for me, the fire danger hit much closer to home on June 26, as we learned about the Flagstaff fire burning west of the City of Boulder. We live in southwest Boulder, and while we weren't in immediate danger, we did receive a pre-evacuation notice. It's tinder-dry and hot, so there was no choice but to take the notice seriously.

Flagstaff Fire%2C June 2012

Photo of smoke from the Flagstaff fire, courtesy of Shawn Collins, Boulder, Colorado

Thanks to the efforts of firefighters, a small amount of rain and perhaps some luck, we're still in our home as of Wednesday evening. But others around our state have not been as lucky, so I'd like to ask everyone to consider two simple things.

First, displaced residents and emergency organizations need help. Please consider visiting the Help Colorado Now Web site, http://www.helpcoloradonow.org. The site offers a great deal of information about what people need and how to get it to them.

Second, please respect restrictions on burning and use of fireworks. Gov. John Hickenlooper has called for a statewide ban on open burning and private use of fireworks, while local governments have the authority to call for stricter regulations. 

We can't prevent lightning from starting a fire, but we can practice extra responsibility to make sure the next fire isn't caused by humans. Thanks for anything you can do!

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