Burn ban archives for: Okanogan County

Asotin and Klickitat counties added to Stage 1 burn ban in Eastern Washington

SPOKANE – Stagnant weather conditions continue to expand and persist in Central and Eastern Washington, prompting the Washington Department of Ecology to include two more counties in the Stage 1 burn ban.

Starting at 9 a.m., Friday, Dec. 8, 2017, the burn ban will be expanded to include Asotin and Klickitat counties. The burn ban will continue in Ferry, Pend Oreille, Stevens, Chelan, Douglas, Kittitas, and Okanogan counties until further notice.

A persistence of strong, high-pressure weather is keeping air conditions stagnant, putting communities at risk for unhealthy levels of air pollution. Fine particles from wood smoke can easily get into people’s lungs causing heart and breathing problems.

Under a Stage 1 ban, all outdoor burning is prohibited including residential, agricultural and forest burning. Use of uncertified wood stoves, fireplaces, inserts, and other uncertified wood-burning devices is prohibited unless they are a home’s only adequate source of heat. Certified wood stoves, pellet stoves and other certified wood-burning devices are allowed.

Call 866-211-6284 if you think someone is illegally burning or you are impacted by smoke. Up-to-date burn ban information is available at www.waburnbans.net.

Ecology’s burn bans do not apply on tribal reservations, where the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has jurisdiction. Call 800-424-4372 for tribal burn ban information or visit EPA’s Washington Burn Ban webpage.

Stage 1 burn ban extended and expanded Eastern Washington counties

Stagnant weather conditions are expected to continue in Central and Eastern Washington, prompting the Washington Department of Ecology to expand and extend the Stage 1 burn ban.

Starting Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017, at 9:00 am, the burn ban will be expanded to include Ferry, Pend Oreille, and Stevens counties, and the burn ban will continue in Chelan, Douglas, Kittitas, and Okanogan counties.

In an effort to prevent poor air quality, the burn ban will remain in effect until further notice.

Under a Stage 1 ban, all outdoor burning is prohibited including residential, agricultural and forest burning. Use of uncertified wood stoves, fireplaces, inserts, and other uncertified wood-burning devices is prohibited unless they are a home’s only adequate source of heat. Certified wood stoves, pellet stoves and other certified wood-burning devices are allowed.

Call 866-211-6284 if you think someone is illegally burning or you are impacted by smoke.
Up-to-date burn ban information is available at www.waburnbans.net.

Ecology’s burn bans do not apply on tribal reservations, where the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has jurisdiction. Call 800-424-4372 for tribal burn ban information or visit EPA’s Washington Burn Ban page on their website.

Conditions prompt Stage 1 burn ban on Dec. 4 for Chelan, Douglas, Kittitas and Okanogan counties

UNION GAP – A forecast of cooling temperatures and stagnant air is prompting a Stage 1 burn ban for four Central Washington counties starting 9 a.m. Monday, Dec. 4, 2017.

All outdoor burning and the use of uncertified stoves and fireplaces will be prohibited in Chelan, Douglas, Kittitas and Okanogan Counties due to poor air quality in the region. Restrictions on burning will continue through 9 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 6, when conditions will be reassessed.

The Washington Department of Ecology is calling the burn ban because cooling air followed by stagnant conditions will put communities at risk for unhealthy levels of air pollution. Fine particles from wood smoke can easily get into peoples’ lungs causing heart and breathing problems.

Under the Stage 1 ban, all outdoor burning is prohibited including residential, agricultural and forest burning. Use of uncertified wood stoves, fireplaces, inserts, and other uncertified wood-burning devices are prohibited unless they are a home’s only adequate source of heat. Cleaner burning certified wood stoves, pellet stoves and other certified wood-burning devices are allowed.

Call 866-211-6284 if you think someone is illegally burning or you are impacted by smoke.

Current burn ban information is available at www.waburnbans.net.

Ecology’s burn bans do not apply on tribal reservations, where the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has jurisdiction. Call 800-424-4372 for tribal burn ban information or visit EPA’s Washington Burn Ban page on their website.

DNR eases campfire restrictions after rains

Other outdoor burning still prohibited due to continuing high fire danger

OLYMPIA – With rain and cooler temperatures easing fire danger across Washington, the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is lifting restrictions on recreational campfires.

Effective 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 20, campfires will be allowed in approved fire pits in designated campgrounds Washington lands protected by DNR.

Because forests and rangelands remain dry from the summer’s low precipitation totals, other forms of outdoor burning, such as debris burning, remain prohibited under the burn ban ordered by Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz.

“We’re thankful to have rain help wet our landscapes, but as we saw with a quick-moving fire east of Ellensburg Sunday evening, we’re not out of fire season quite yet,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz. “I urge everyone to check with their local authorities before lighting campfires.”

Check local restrictions

Counties and local fire districts may have their own continued campfire bans. Burn restrictions on federally-owned lands, such as national forests, national parks, national wildlife refuges or other areas are administered by federal agencies. Check local restrictions, campground signs or with campground hosts before starting a campfire.

For current information on burn restrictions, call 1-800-323-BURN or visit DNR’s webpage showing fire danger and burning restrictions by county: www.dnr.wa.gov/burn-restrictions.

Those choosing to have a campfire in allowed areas should:

  • Use an approved or provided fire pit only; don’t create a new one.
  • Keep the campfire small.
  • Keep plenty of water and a shovel nearby.
  • Never leave the campfire unattended.
  • To extinguish a campfire: drown with water, mix ashes, scrape partially-burned sticks and logs, and alternate drowning and mixing until cold. A campfire too hot to touch, is too hot to leave.

 More than 90 percent of Washington’s wildfires this year have been human-caused. As of Sept. 19, 2017, DNR has responded to 745 wildfires this year. Here is a year-to-date comparison of the last 5 years:

  • 2012 – 671 fires for 67,455 acres
  • 2013 – 722 fires for 126,027 acres
  • 2014 – 808 fires for 314,565 acres
  • 2015 – 953 fires for 753,104 acres
  • 2016 – 766 fires for 16,403 acres

Escaped and abandoned campfires are one of the state’s leading causes of wildfires, with an average of 105 fires started by campfires over the past five years. Washington also sees an average of 140 fires started by debris burning every year.

DNR’s wildfire mission

Administered by Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz, DNR is responsible for preventing and fighting wildfires on 13 million acres of private, state and tribal-owned forestlands. DNR is the state’s largest on-call fire department and participates in Washington’s coordinated interagency approach to firefighting.