FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 26, 2010
Changes to Spokane County burning regulations
Yard and garden debris burning banned
OLYMPIA – Recent changes for burning in Spokane County have led to confusion about when and what landowners can burn. The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) says that burning of yard and garden debris is no longer allowed in Spokane County with the exception of land outside urban growth areas in Spokane County Fire Districts 2, 5, 11, or 12.
Silvicultural debris consists of trees, limbs, and needles generated on unimproved property which is outside of urban growth areas on DNR-protected lands. Unimproved lands means those lands that will support grass, brush, and tree growth or other flammable material when such lands are not cleared or cultivated and, in the opinion of DNR, are a fire menace to life and property. Typically, this property is the area beyond homeowner’s improved property such as yards, gardens, and other areas that are maintained.
Regulations for silvicultural burning
Silvicultural debris burning may be permissible on unimproved land outside of urban growth areas and city limits on DNR-protected lands.
No permit is required if the burn meets all of the following criteria:
- Call 1-800-323-BURN or check http://fortress.wa.gov/dnr/firedanger/BurnRisk.aspx before you burn for current burn ban information.
- Burn no more than one pile, up to 4 feet across, at any one time.
- Create a fire break around the pile by constructing a barrier to bare mineral soil with no flammable material.
- Keep a shovel and connected water hose or at least 5 gallons of water nearby.
- A person capable of extinguishing the fire must be in attendance at all times while burning.
- Burn only in calm winds.
- The pile may only consist of clean, natural vegetation, free of dirt.
A permit is required:
- If you cannot meet the above standards.
- If you burn any machine-piled material.
- If you burn within 500 feet of forest slash piles and within 50 feet of structures.
A burning brochure can be viewed at: www.spokanecleanair.org/outdoor_burning.asp
For a burn permit or questions about silvicultural burning, contact DNR’s Northeast Region Office in Colville at (509) 685-6900. Allow up to two weeks to receive a permit.
Contact the fire district in your area for more information about yard and garden debris burning.
DNR’s wildfire mission
Administered by Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark, DNR is responsible for preventing and fighting wildfires on 12.7 million acres of private, state and tribal-owned forestlands. DNR is the state’s largest on-call fire department, with over a thousand employees trained and available to be dispatched to fires as needed. During fire season, this includes over 700 hundred DNR employees who have other permanent jobs with the agency and about 375 seasonal workers. Additionally, Department of Correction inmates participate in the DNR Correctional Camps Program. DNR also participates in Washington’s coordinated interagency approach to firefighting.
Follow current wildfire news on DNR’s fire twitter feed at http://twitter.com/waDNR_fire .
Janet Pearce, Community Outreach and Education, 360-902-1122, firstname.lastname@example.org or
Guy Gifford, Wildfire Prevention Specialist, 509-990-6218, email@example.com
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