A burn ban that was issued Nov. 29 remains in effect throughout the state.
“There is to be absolutely no burning right now, no leaves or yard debris,” said Yadkin County Fire Marshal Ricky Leonard. “We are at high risk right now because of low humidity and super dry conditions.”
Leonard said even outdoor fire pit burning was prohibited. Contained cooking fires such as a grill are permitted.
Leonard urged area residents to follow the burn ban to keep the community safe from the threat of potential wildfires.
“All it takes is one little spark coming down in your neighborhood and we’ve got a Pilot Mountain issue here in Yadkin County and our fire departments are already stretched thin enough, we don’t want to add to that,” he said.
In a press release issued from the N.C. Department of Agriculture late last month, Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler said, “It is fall wildfire season in North Carolina, and we are seeing wildfire activity increase due to dry conditions. With these ongoing conditions, a statewide burn ban is necessary to reduce the risk of fires starting and spreading quickly. Our top priority is always to protect lives, property and forestland across the state.”
Under North Carolina law, the ban prohibits all open burning in the affected counties, regardless of whether a permit was previously issued. The issuance of any new permits has also been suspended until the ban is lifted. Anyone violating the burn ban faces a $100 fine plus $183 court costs. Any person responsible for setting a fire may be liable for any expenses related to extinguishing the fire.
Local fire departments and law enforcement officers are assisting the N.C. Forest Service in enforcing the burn ban.
The N.C. Forest Service will continue to monitor conditions. Leonard said with the lack of rain, he expects the burn ban to remain in effect for some time.