Don’t fool with fire |

Don’t fool with fire

Kelli R. Dick

SUMMIT COUNTY – People just don’t get it.

Five fire-ban citations were issued over the holiday weekend, despite statewide fire bans, signs posted along Interstate 70, reports in newspapers and the TV news every day and night.

n On July 4, a hiker called in a campfire siting at Heaton Bay Campground. Based on the extreme fire danger, dry conditions and the possibility of wildland fires, a camper, who admitted to starting the fire, was issued a citation for reckless endangerment.

n Another call that day went out for an open campfire in the area around Lenawee/Fry Gulch. A Summit County Sheriff’s officer called to the scene found an unattended fire and a camper sleeping in a nearby tent. Snake River Fire District firefighters were called and extinguished the fire and the surrounding area with 200 gallons of water. The officer issued a citation for reckless endangerment to the camper, who admitted starting the fire.

n Another fire was called in at Green Mountain Reservoir July 4. When the officer reached the scene, she found a large open fire surrounded by tall bushes directly under several trees. Three men and a woman, none of who were carrying identification, were around the fire.

After putting out the fire, two of the men became verbally aggressive and claimed the fire was there when they arrived at the campsite. After several minutes of arguing, one of the men volunteered to accept the citation for reckless endangerment so all three of them wouldn’t be charged.

n officers also issued a citation for reckless endangerment to a camper who had a burning lantern going while sleeping in a tent.

n The driver of a vehicle driving southbound on Highway 9 received a reckless endangerment citation after admitting throwing a lit cigarette from his vehicle, which hit the hood of an officer’s patrol car.

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