Category Archives: BCAA

Benton Clean Air Agency

DNR Fire Danger Burn Ban in Effect STATE-WIDE

Outdoor burning off limits through Sept. 30
With the arrival of warm summer temperatures and below normal precipitation in western Washington, the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has expanded its burn ban to cover the entire state.

The statewide burn ban will run from July 29 through Sept. 30. A burn ban for DNR-protected lands in eastern Washington has been in effect since July 2. The ban may be extended or shortened based on fire weather.

“The arrival of summer weather creates greater danger for wildfires, which are serious threats to safety, property and habitat. We have already seen a number of roadside fires start on both sides of the Cascades,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark. “We must be cautious and vigilant to minimize the damage to our state.”
The ban means outdoor burning is prohibited on all forestlands that DNR protects from wildfire. Anyone caught violating the burn ban can face fines. Prescribed ecological burns approved by DNR will be allowed if expressly approved by Commissioner Goldmark.
Recreational fires in approved fire pits within designated state, county, municipal and other campgrounds are allowed.
DNR’s burn ban does not apply to federally-owned lands, such as national forests, national parks, national wildlife refuges or other areas administered by federal agencies. Counties and local fire districts may have additional burn restrictions.
So far this year, DNR has had 408 wildfire starts throughout the state.
Fireworks and incendiary devices, such as exploding targets, sky lanterns, or tracer ammunition, are illegal on all DNR-protected forestlands.
For a copy of the Commissioner’s Order, go to http://www.dnr.wa.gov/burn-bans.
DNR’s wildfire mission 
Administered by Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark, DNR is the state’s largest on-call fire department, responsible for preventing and fighting wildfires on 13 million acres of private, state, and tribal-owned forestlands in Washington. During fire season, DNR’s wildfire force includes more than 1,300 trained employees. DNR also participates in Washington’s coordinated interagency approach to firefighting.
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DNR Burn Ban Expires but some hazards remain

As a public safety precaution, Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) campgrounds at Leader Lake and Rock Creek will remain closed because of damage caused by the Okanogan Complex fire. The Rock Creek picnic area will also remain closed.

Burned-out stumps, fire-weakened trees and concealed pits are dangers that can put recreationists at risk if they venture into these closed campgrounds or other recently burned areas. Distressed and snagged tree areas are especially prone to falling in high winds. Extensive damage to camp structures will likely keep the Rock Creek campground and picnic area closed through next year’s camping season, according to DNR. Pending restoration, Leader Lake may open in early April of next year.

Even though conditions have improved, eastern Washington still has active wildfires. As a result, additional recreation site closures are in place and may change with little notice. Please check for closures before heading out.

Visitors must check at campground entrances or with campground hosts before starting a campfire. See more at: http://www.dnr.wa.gov/news/dnr-campground-closures-and-fire-restrictions-continue-ne-washington#sthash.0ZtyrpOp.dpuf

Outdoor Burn Ban, Washington State Wide

Gov. Gregoire extends State of Emergency and burn ban to include all counties in WA state
For Immediate Release: October 7, 2012
OLYMPIA – Gov. Chris Gregoire today announced that an emergency proclamation declaring a State of Emergency and banning all outdoor burning has been extended through midnight Monday, Oct. 15th, and now includes all counties in Washington state.

“Washington state is experiencing a weather pattern like one we’ve rarely seen before,” Gregoire said. “The long, warm and dry spell has elevated fire danger across our state. Given that we don’t expect a significant amount of rainfall for quite some time, it makes sense to extend this proclamation and expand the burn ban. Extraordinary dry conditions across our state require that all Washingtonians exercise the utmost caution and allow fire crews to focus on the challenges at hand.”

“Most often it’s wind, or snow or heavy rain that causes us problems,” said Washington State Patrol Chief John R. Batiste. “In this case some very nice weather also has an extreme downside. While we’d all like to be camping or picnicking in the woods, open fires just can’t be a part of the mix.”

The burn ban prohibits all outdoor burning, including but not limited to:
• Campfires
• Bonfires
• Residential yard debris clean-up, trash disposal, land clearing, weed abatement and agricultural burning activity
• Ignition of fireworks

Liquid fueled or gas-fueled stoves are permitted provided that use is conducted over a non-flammable surface and is at least five feet from flammable vegetation. Charcoal grills are permitted at private residences under the same conditions.

The proclamation issued by the governor:
• Directs state agencies and departments to continue to utilize state resources and to do everything reasonably possible to assist affected political subdivisions in an effort to respond to and recover from the fires;
• Notes the order into active state service of the organized militia of Washington state, to include the National Guard and the State Guard remains in effect; and
• Instructs the Washington State Emergency Operations Center to continue to coordinate all event-related assistance to the affected areas.

The state’s Department of Ecology is monitoring air quality across Washington state where smoke-filled air remains.

To check for air quality monitoring information, visit: http://www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/air/air_monitoring_data/WAQA_Intro_Page.html

Meanwhile, the Washington State Department of Health is providing answers to frequently asked questions about wildfire smoke here: http://www.doh.wa.gov/CommunityandEnvironment/AirQuality/OutdoorAir/SmokeFromFires.aspx

Extention of Eastern Washington burn ban

Gov. Gregoire extends Eastern Washington burn ban to aid fire containment efforts

Updated from press release September 30th, 2012

OLYMPIA – Gov. Chris Gregoire today extended a burn ban for all counties east of the Cascade crest, prohibiting all outdoor burning through midnight Sunday, Oct. 7. An emergency proclamation declaring a State of Emergency remains in effect.

“Fire danger remains very high with our extended warm, dry weather conditions,” said Gregoire. “I don’t want to lose momentum on the tremendous job our fire crews and firefighters have done and continue to do each day. The assistance and cooperation of all Washingtonians who have refrained from burning is essential. We would not be as able to focus our resources and continue to help keep people safe and protect property if our attention is diverted to additional fires.”

Abnormally dry fuel conditions, a forecast for the next seven to ten days with no substantial precipitation, and expected periods of strong northerly winds led to the decision to extend the outdoor burn ban an additional week.

The burn ban prohibits all outdoor burning, including but not limited to:
• Campfires
• Bonfires
• Residential yard debris clean-up, trash disposal, land clearing, weed abatement and agricultural burning activity
• Ignition of fireworks.

The proclamation allows for local fire departments to still issue written permits that approve specific burning activities.

Liquid fueled or gas-fueled stoves are permitted provided that use is conducted over a non-flammable surface and at least five feet from flammable vegetation. Charcoal grills are permitted at private residences under the same conditions.

The proclamation issued by the governor:
• Directs state agencies and departments to continue to utilize state resources and to do everything reasonably possible to assist affected political subdivisions in an effort to respond to and recover from the fires;
• Notes the order into active state service of the organized militia of Washington state, to include the National Guard and the State Guard remains in effect; and
• Instructs the Washington State Emergency Operations Center to continue to coordinate all event-related assistance to the affected areas.

Meanwhile, Gregoire recognizes that smoke-filled air continues to linger in parts of eastern Washington and urges Washingtonians to protect themselves from smoke-filled air. The state’s Department of Ecology is monitoring air quality across Washington state.

To check for air quality monitoring information, please visit the link provided by the State Department of Ecology.

Meanwhile, the Washington State Department of Health is providing answers to frequently asked questions about wildfire smoke on their website.