Today is Monday, July 24, 2017

Local bans on burning lifted

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Under state law, the commissioner of agriculture, in consultation with the state forester, has the authority to issue burn bans at the request of county mayors under certain weather conditions. Requests from county mayors for a burn ban are considered in consultation with the state forester based on a number of factors including weather, climate, fire danger, fire occurrence and resource availability.

Were working with local officials to determine where and when it is safe to conduct activity related to outdoor burning, Johnson said. Even though the ban has been rescinded, we want to encourage the public to continue to use good judgment and to avoid situations that can cause fire.

Major causes of wildfire seen across the state this year include sparks from field equipment and vehicles, escaped debris burns, discarded cigarettes, lightning, campfires, arson and fireworks. Citizens can help support their local fire departments by checking for and following local burn restrictions and quickly reporting any wildfire.

Wilson County has seen over 100 grass fires since June 1, with the largest being a 70-acre fire in Watertown on Friday, June 8. Others included a 20-acre fire in Mt. Juliet on Tuesday, June 26.

Jewell urged local residents to still use caution when burning outdoors, or participating in activities that have the potential to start a wildfire.

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