Wildfire Mitigation Regulations - Section 16

Section 16 - Wildfire Mitigation Regulations 

PLEASE NOTE that the Board of County Commissioners recently adopted revised regulations pertaining to Section 16 - Wildfire Mitigation Regulations!  These new regulations go into effect on May 1, 2022.  

The original wildfire Code section was adopted in 1997.   On January 28, 2020, the Ouray County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) adopted significant revisions to the County’s Wildfire Mitigation Regulations, which become effective May 1, 2020.  Those regulations were then subsequently revised again by the BOCC and those changes are effective on May 1 , 2022.   These regulations were developed in cooperation between Ouray County (Planning Commission, and Land Use Staff, BOCC), local fire departments / fire districts, the Colorado State Forest Service, and the West Region Wildfire Council (WRWC). 

The revised regulations were developed using current wildfire science and takes into consideration recent scientific studies on wildfire and the "Wildland Urban Interface" or "WUI." Wildland Urban Interface is commonly defined as "a zone of transition between wildland or unoccupied land and human development."

Ouray County’s revised Wildfire Mitigation Regulations will likely have an effect on most future building projects and will also require additional information to be submitted with the building permit application, including, including, but not limited to:

  • Description of Roofing Material - Must be "Class-A", ignition resistant
  • Description of all siding materials - Defensible space required if combustible 
  • Details on flashing and skirting/materials
  • Identification of proper vent / gable screens - 1/8" or smaller required!
  • Spark Arrestor - Required and must be clearly called out on plan detail
  • 5-Foot Hardened Zone - Required and must be clearly delineated on site plan
  • Doors - Must be ignition-resistant and called out on plan detail
  • Driveway Design - plans clearly show: driving surface width, interior radii, driveway opening, grade (not to exceed 12%), site distance, etc. 
  • Gutters - description of materials if proposed, no vinyl 
  • Defensible Space - Required if combustible siding is being proposed
    • New:  If Defensible Space is necessary, you will be required to sign an "Affidavit of Compliance with Ouray County Wildfire Mitigation Regulations" and submit a refundable deposit totaling 1% of the estimated project valuation.  If the defensible space plan is executed within 1 year from the date of the issuance of your Certificate of Occupancy, your deposit will be refunded.
  • Decking and Fence Material - May require non-combustible composite materials
  • Eaves, Overhangs, Structure Projections - May require ignition-resistant materials 
  • Windows - Glazing, tempering, low-e, metal framed may be required

For links to Wildfire Mitigation companion documents required for all Building Permit Applications, click on an associated link below. Click here to review Section 16 - Wildfire Mitigation Regulations. (Effective May 1, 2022)