“DNR BANS ALL OUTDOOR BURNING
Those Who Start Or Spread Fires Subject To Civil And Criminal Penalties
OLYMPIA – With dangerously hot and dry weather driving fire danger to a new high, the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is expanding the current statewide burn ban to cover all outdoor burning on all DNR-protected lands, with no exceptions, the agency announced today.
“All indicators are that we’ll continue to have high heat, low humidity, and storm systems with winds and lightning. That means huge potential for wildfires,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark. “We need to do everything we can to minimize danger to people, homes and habitat.”
Hot and dry conditions since early summer have caused very high fire hazard conditions throughout the state. These conditions have caused fires to spread rapidly and challenged firefighting efforts. More than $91 million has been spent so far battling wildfires in 2014, and more than 350,000 acres have burned across the state. There are many weeks to go in this year’s fire season, which usually runs into October.
All outdoor burning on DNR-protected lands is prohibited under this ban, including recreational fires in campgrounds or anywhere on DNR-protected lands. Fireworks and incendiary devices, such as exploding targets, sky lanterns, or tracer ammunition, are illegal on all DNR-protected lands. Charcoal briquettes are also not allowed.
In addition, DNR urges extreme caution around any activity that may cause a fire to start. Under these severe fire-hazard conditions, logging operations, land clearing, road and utility right-of-way maintenance, use of spark-emitting equipment, and other activities that create a high risk of fire ignition should be drastically curtailed.
Those who negligently allow fire to spread or who knowingly place forestlands in danger of destruction or damage are subject to possible civil liabilities and criminal penalties under state law. DNR, as well as anyone harmed by such a fire, may pursue damages that include loss of property and fire suppression costs.
The statewide burn ban will run through September 30, 2014. It applies to all lands under DNR fire protection, which does not include federally owned lands.
Wildland Fire Information
With the increased threat of wildland fires in the area Chelan Fire & Rescue wants to help residents learn ways they can stay informed and what steps to take to be prepared during this wildfire season.
Currently the Chelan County Sherriff’s office is taking the lead on public information and will be releasing current updates and information on local fires that could potentially affect Chelan County residents. Visit their website at http://www.co.chelan.wa.us/sheriff/
Or follow them on the Chelan County Office of Emergency Management Facebook Page and Twitter.
Local media will also be distributing information on local radio and websites as it becomes available.
KOZI http://www.kozi.com/ 93.5 FM AM 1230
The Mirror - http://lakechelanmirror.com/index.asp
Go Lake Chelan. http://www.golakechelan.com/
Wenatchee World http://www.wenatcheeworld.com/news/news/
An app for your phone is also available for wildfire news and updates to download:
search "Red Cross Wildfire" in the Apple App Store or Google Play.
For Traffic Alerts and Road Closures
For Red Cross Shelter Locations
Wildfire is unpredictable, can move and change its course rapidly and when fueled with dry grass, timber and strong winds it can spread quickly throughout the Columbia River Valley. In Chelan County, a three-tiered evacuation system is used. It is important for residents to know what the evacuation levels mean and to act accordingly when asked to prepare or actually evacuate.
These evacuation orders are very serious and are not implemented without good reason and concern for the safety of residents.
Level 1 Evacuations are an alert. Residents should be aware of the danger that exists, and monitor local media outlets for information. Residents with special needs, or those with pets or livestock, should take note and make preparations for relocating family members, pets, and livestock.
Level 2 - Evacuations indicate there is a significant risk to your area, and residents should either voluntarily relocate to a shelter or with family/friends outside of the area, or, be ready to leave at a moments notice.
Level 3 - means danger is currently affecting your area or is imminent, and you should leave immediately.
Preparing in advance is key for a successful, calm, and orderly evacuation. Wildfire is a great threat within Chelan County, and something all residents should prepare for. Making a kit, having a plan, and remaining informed is vital.
For more information on how to prepare to evacuate yourself and family if necessary visit Ready.Gov at http://www.ready.gov/evacuating-yourself-and-your-family
The Latest changes to Outdoor Burning Rules:
Fire RegulationsOkanogan-Wenatchee National ForestPursuant to 36 CFR 261.50 (a), the following acts are prohibited on National Forest System Lands as described below within the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forests.
1. Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire fire, or stove fire.For the purpose of this order, this restriction includes briquette fires and applies to all National Forest System Lands within the Okanogan – Wenatchee National Forest.(36 CFR 261.52
(a)).Persons maintaining a pressurized liquid gas stove, pressurized liquid gas fire, or an enclosed solid fuel fire that utilizes a wick to distribute a flame are exempt from this order.This order is effective 0100 hours July 18, 2014 and will remain in effect until further notice.Pursuant to 36 CFR 261.50 (e), the following persons are exempt from this order:
1. Persons with a permit that specifically authorizes the otherwise prohibited act or omission.
2. Any Federal, State, or local officer, or member of an organized rescue or fire fighting force in the performance of an official duty.This prohibition is in addition to the general prohibitions in 36 CFR 261, Subpart A.Done at Wenatchee, Washington this July 17, 2014./s/ Michael BalboniMichael L. BalboniForest SupervisorOkanogan-Wenatchee NFViolations of these prohibitions are punishable by a fine of not more than $5,000.00 for an individual or $10,000.00 for an organization, or imprisonment for not more than 6 months, or both. (16 USC Section 551 and 18 USC 3559 and 3571).
Subject Emergency Declaration Amendment to Resolution #2014-66 by One Commissioner (Chelan County Commissioners)
High Fire Danger Fire Ban for Chelan County
WILDLAND FIRE SAFETY
Every year, wildfires burn across the U.S. and more and more people are living where wildfires are a real risk. But by working together, residents can make their own property – and their neighborhood – much safer from wildfire. Read more
Chelan Valley Events
(click to view the events in the area)