BOCC reinstates burn ban, again

After allowing the burn ban to expire on Friday, the Board of County Commissioners met Monday morning and reinstated the ban for 14 days.

Commissioners will re-evaluate in two weeks to determine if the ban will be continued or allowed to expire. 

The commissioners allowed the ban to expire last week due to the potential amount of rain in the forecast. However, the rains never did fall.

The City of Guthrie also remains in a burn ban.

With the county ban, it is unlawful for any person to set fire to any forest, grass, range, crop, or other wild lands, or to build a campfire or bonfire, or to bum trash or other material that may cause a forest, grass, range, crop, or other wild lands fire.

There are exceptions to the burn ban.

For welding, cutting torch, and grinding activities when conducted over non-combustible surface of at least 10 feet by 10 feet and when welding blankets or screens are used to cover flammable vegetation, wind speeds must be less than 10 mph, a fire watch, other than the welder, is posted at the welding/cutting torch site with pressurized water or fire extinguisher.

For outdoor cooking, LPG and natural gas grills for outside cooking in a grilling receptacle are permitted provided that the activity is conducted over a non-flammable surface and at least five (5) feet from flammable vegetation.

For agricultural burning citizens must follow Oklahoma Forestry Service guidelines. Bum plans must be on person for the duration of the controlled agricultural burning.

Enforcement of this resolution may be carried out by any law enforcement officer of this State. Any person convicted of violating this resolution shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be subject to a fine of not more than Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00), to imprisonment for not more than one (1) year, or to both such fine and imprisonment.

Guidelines to issuing a Burn Ban

Prior to the passage of a burn ban, the Board must declare the existence of extreme fire danger. This means the following conditions MUST exist:

1. Moderate, severe or extreme drought exists as determined by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

2. No more than 1/2″ of precipitation is forecast for the next three days

And either of the following conditions:

Fire occurrence is greater than normal for the season and/or initial attack on a significant number of wildland fires has been unsuccessful due to extreme fire behavior, or more than 20% of wildfires in the county have been caused by escaped debris burning or controlled burning activities.


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