March 26, 2013
Ohioans are urged to be aware of the state’s outdoor burning regulations and take necessary precautions if they are planning to burn debris this spring, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).
Ohio law states outdoor debris burning is prohibited from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. during March, April and May. Burning is limited in the spring due to the abundance of dry fuel on the ground before small, grassy fuels green up with moisture. Winds can make a seemingly safe fire burn more intensely and escape control.
“We often wait until spring for cleaning chores, and many residents burn their unwanted debris,” said Robert Boyles, chief of the ODNR Division of Forestry. “Unfortunately, some of these fires unintentionally escape control and cause wildfires, which result in significant property damage, personal injury and occasionally even loss of life.”
If a fire does escape control, immediately contact the local fire department. An escaped wildfire, even one burning in grass or weeds, is dangerous. Violators of Ohio’s burning regulations are subject to citations and fines. Residents should also check the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency regulations and consult with local fire officials about burning conditions.
The ODNR Division of Forestry offers these safety tips for burning debris outdoors:
• Consider using a 55-gallon drum with a weighted screen lid to provide an enclosed incinerator.
• Know current and future weather conditions, have tools on hand and never leave a debris burn unattended.
• Be informed about state and local burning regulations.
• Consult the local fire department for additional information and safety considerations.
• Visit ohiodnr.com/forestry and firewise.org for more information and tips on protecting a home and community.
Remember: “Don’t burn during the day in March, April and May!”
The ODNR Division of Forestry works to promote the wise use and sustainable management of Ohio’s public and private woodlands. To learn more about Ohio’s woodlands, visit ohiodnr.com/forestry.
ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.com.
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