Outdoor burn ban now includes all of Washington state
October 8, 2012 · Updated 2:03 PM
Gov. Chris Gregoire Sunday announced that an emergency proclamation declaring a State of Emergency and banning all outdoor burning has been extended through midnight Monday, Oct. 15, and now includes all counties in Washington state.
King County has been under a county-wide burn ban since early September, as ordered by the King County fire marshal.
This Phase 1 burn ban applies to all outdoor burning except for small recreational fires in established fire pits at approved camp grounds or private property with the owner's permission. These fires must:
- Be built in a metal or concrete fire pit, such as those typically found in designated campgrounds;
- Grow no larger than three feet across;
- Be located in a clear spot free from any vegetation for at least 10 feet in a horizontal direction, including a 20-foot vertical clearance from overhanging branches; and
- Be attended at all times by an alert individual with immediate access to a shovel and either five gallons of water or a connected and charged water hose.
The use of gas and propane self-contained stoves and barbeques will continue to be allowed under the ban.
Gregoire said Washington state is experiencing a weather pattern rarely seen before.
“The long, warm and dry spell has elevated fire danger across our state. Given that we don’t expect a significant amount of rainfall for quite some time, it makes sense to extend this proclamation and expand the burn ban. Extraordinary dry conditions across our state require that all Washingtonians exercise the utmost caution and allow fire crews to focus on the challenges at hand," she said.
“Most often it’s wind, or snow or heavy rain that causes us problems,” said Washington State Patrol Chief John R. Batiste. “In this case some very nice weather also has an extreme downside. While we’d all like to be camping or picnicking in the woods, open fires just can’t be a part of the mix.”
The statewide burn ban prohibits all outdoor burning, including but not limited to:
- Residential yard debris clean-up, trash disposal, land clearing, weed abatement and agricultural burning activity
- Ignition of fireworks
- Liquid fueled or gas-fueled stoves are permitted provided that use is conducted over a non-flammable surface and is at least five feet from flammable vegetation. Charcoal grills are permitted at private residences under the same conditions.