News

Gregoire extends state of emergency; burn ban now includes all counties

OLYMPIA – Gov. Chris Gregoire announced Monday that an emergency proclamation declaring a state of emergency and banning all outdoor burning has been extended through midnight Oct. 15, and now includes all counties in Washington state.

“Washington state is experiencing a weather pattern like one we’ve rarely seen before,” Gregoire said. “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.”

Washington State Patrol Chief John R. Batiste added, “Most often it’s wind, or snow or heavy rain that causes us problems. 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 burn ban prohibits all outdoor burning, including but not limited to:

— Campfires

— Bonfires

— 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.

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