Must be held accountable
August 2, 2002
The homeowner and construction crew that caused the fire atop Missouri Heights must be held accountable for their careless actions that are nothing short of gross negligence.
There have been numerous warnings in all media regarding the extreme nature of our unfortunate dry conditions and the laws banning the use of anything that may put the area at risk. The homeowner and construction crew obviously ignored these warnings and acted in their own self interests.
It is a shame that the homeowners lost all their personal possessions and have to rebuild or move. And what about the scores of other residents, such as myself, that are unable to stay at our homes because the smoke is so dense that we can hardly breathe? That is just the tip of the iceberg.
It can only be imagined how much it has cost the taxpayers of Garfield and Eagle counties and the State of Colorado to try to contain these fires. A complete and thorough investigation must be commenced to determine if there was any wrongdoing and who is responsible.
This should include whether or not the homeowner and construction crew obtained the proper permits to engage in their activities, whether their activities were of a nature that caused a clear and present danger to themselves and their neighbors, and whether the county may have inadvertently provided a permit or allowed the reckless activity to continue on a prior permit in light of the impending fire dangers.
Our respective county governments need to act swiftly and make any and all emergency revisions to their building codes in light of these dangers. Short of this, we can all expect the costs and inconveniences as the residents of Missouri Heights are now facing.
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