Natrona County will impose fire restrictions beginning Friday because of recent high temperatures, wind conditions, drying fuel sources and spot fires, according to news release.

The restrictions will partially close all areas within the unincorporated areas -- not including the City of Casper and the towns -- of the county, including state and federal lands, to open burning and fire-related activities on all private and county lands.

These restrictions are in addition to those imposed beginning Friday by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management on the public lands it administers in much of central, eastern and northeastern Wyoming.

County Fire Warden Mike Haigler, with the support of the County Fire Protection District and the Casper Mountain Fire Protection District, will formally ask the Natrona County Commission to approve a fire restriction resolution at its next meeting at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Meanwhile, preventing wildfires can't wait for official action.

These are the restrictions:

  • Burn trash and refuse only in containers with spark arresters in a 10-foot clear area between 6 a.m. and 11 a.m., and only in areas approved for this type of burning.
  • Contain wood fires in established fire rings. Do not build or use any open fire or camp fire except within agency-provided fire rings or grates at developed campgrounds, or within fully enclosed stoves, grills or in stoves using pressurized liquid gas.
  • You may have a charcoal fire within an enclosed grill. However, do not discard hot coals in a way that will ignite a fire.
  • Do not throw or drop any lighted match, cigar, cigarette or other burning substance in combustible material such as weeds or brush, or near combustible materials.
  • Do not smoke except in an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or an area at least three feet in diameter that barren of all flammable material.
  • Do not discharge fireworks, explosives requiring fuses or blasting caps without an approved permit.
  • Do not use acetylene cutting torches or electric arc welders except in areas cleared of all vegetation in a 10-foot area.
  • Do not use propane or conduct fire-branding activities except in corral areas in ranch complexes considered to be improved and cleared of all vegetation.
  • Do not have fire or open flames in unimproved areas.
  • Do not operate chainsaws without properly installed USDA- or SAE-approved spark arresters. Keep a five-pound or larger dry chemical fire extinguisher or an adequate supply of water nearby in case of a fire. These fire tools may be kept with the operator's gas supply, but must be available in the immediate vicinity of the chainsaw operations.
  • Do not burn slash piles on Casper Mountain. Landowners on the mountain with slash pile cleanup can take their slash to Tower Hill, which has been designated for receipt and disposal of slash piles.

The county may impose additional restrictions on allowed uses in certain areas because of adverse weather, range and fuel conditions at the discretion and advice of the County Fire Warden, Natrona County Fire Protection District and the Casper Mountain Fire District.

Religious groups seeking an exemption for religious ceremonies must apply to the County Fire Warden for the exemption. They must provide details about the nature of the ceremony and propose safety precautions to minimize the risk of fire.

A violation of these restrictions is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine up to $100 and a jail sentence up to 30 days.