FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 30, 2014
Burn ban on DNR-protected lands east of the Cascades starts July 1
OLYMPIA – The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) today announced there will be a burn ban starting tomorrow on DNR-protected lands east of the Cascades. The burn ban is based on weather and fuel conditions.
Starting July 1 and running through September 30, 2014, the burn ban is currently limited to Eastern Washington. It may eventually be extended to Western Washington as conditions warrant. It applies to all forestlands under DNR fire protection, which does not include federally owned lands.
“The seasonally dry weather creates a greater risk for wildfires,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark. “A burn ban helps to prevent them, and protects forests, habitat and property.”
Already in 2014, DNR has had 172 wildfire starts, which have burned approximately 779 acres throughout the state.
The ban applies to all outdoor burning on DNR-protected forestlands east of the Cascades with two exceptions. Recreational fires in approved fire pits within designated state, county, municipal or other campgrounds, and gas or propane stoves and barbeque grills are allowed. DNR-approved prescribed fires, implemented to enhance or restore fire-dependent ecosystems and forest health, when enhancement and restoration by prescribed fire can only be accomplished successfully during the period of time from July 1 through September 30, 2014 are also permitted if expressly approved by the Commissioner of Public Lands.
Fireworks and incendiary devices, such as exploding targets, sky lanterns, or tracer ammunition, are illegal on all DNR-protected forestlands. Charcoal briquettes are also not allowed.
Only you can prevent wildfires
If you plan to burn, it is your responsibility to know the rules.
DNR’s wildfire mission
Administered by Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark, 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, with more than 1,000 employees trained and available to be dispatched to fires as needed. During fire season, this includes more than 700 DNR employees who have other permanent jobs with the agency and about 400 seasonal employees hired for firefighting duties. Additionally, adult offenders from the Department of Corrections and juvenile offenders from the Department of Social and Health Services-Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration support firefighting efforts through DNR’s Correctional Camps Program. DNR also participates in Washington's coordinated interagency approach to firefighting.
Media Contact: Janet Pearce, Communications Manager, 360-902-1122, firstname.lastname@example.org
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