Fire safety tips to help prevent wildfires
With the state still experiencing dry conditions and with wildfires continuing to burn across the state, the N.C. Forest Service urges North Carolinians to be especially careful with fire and pay attention to any burn bans in place.
The state Forest Service urges people to follow these tips to protect property and prevent wildfires:
- Make sure you have a valid permit. Permits can be obtained at any Forest Service office or authorized permitting agent or online at www.ncforestservice.gov
- Keep an eye on the weather. Don't burn on dry, windy days.
- Local fire officials can recommend a safe way to burn debris. Don't pile vegetation on the ground. Instead, it should be placed in a cleared area and contained in a screened receptacle, away from overhead branches and wires.
- Check local laws on burning debris. Some communities allow burning only during specified hours. Others forbid it entirely.
- Consider the alternatives to burning. Some types of debris, such as leaves, grass and stubble may be of more value if they are not burned, but used for mulch instead.
- Household trash should be hauled away to a recycling station. It is illegal to burn anything other than yard debris.
- Be sure you are fully prepared before burning. To control the fire, you will need a hose, bucket and a shovel for tossing dirt on the fire.
- Never use kerosene, gasoline, diesel fuel or other flammable liquids to speed debris burning.
- Stay with your fire until it is completely out.
Studies have shown that adhering to these and other measures can reduce the possibility for wildfires.