OLYMPIA – The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) today announced there will be a burn ban starting tomorrow on DNR-protected lands east of the Cascades. The burn ban is based on weather and fuel conditions.

Starting July 1 and running through September 30, 2014, the burn ban is currently limited to Eastern Washington. It may eventually be extended to Western Washington as conditions warrant. It applies to all forestlands under DNR fire protection, which does not include federally owned lands.

“The seasonally dry weather creates a greater risk for wildfires,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark. “A burn ban helps to prevent them, and protects forests, habitat and property.”

Already in 2014, DNR has had 172 wildfire starts, which have burned approximately 779 acres throughout the state.

The ban applies to all outdoor burning on DNR-protected forestlands east of the Cascades with two exceptions:

  1. Recreational fires in approved fire pits within designated state, county, municipal or other campgrounds, and gas or propane stoves and barbeque grills are allowed.
  2. DNR-approved prescribed fires, implemented to enhance or restore fire-dependent ecosystems and forest health, when enhancement and restoration by prescribed fire can only be accomplished successfully during the period of time from July 1 through September 30, 2014 are also permitted if expressly approved by the Commissioner of Public Lands.

Fireworks and incendiary devices, such as exploding targets, sky lanterns, or tracer ammunition, are illegal on all DNR-protected forestlands. Charcoal briquettes are also not allowed.

Only you can prevent wildfires.
If you plan to burn, it is your responsibility to know the rules.

* For state laws governing DNR-regulated burning, see Chapter 76.04 RCW

* For DNR administrative rules, see Chapter 332-24 WAC

* If your fire escapes, you will be responsible for paying for the suppression of that fire as required by Chapter 76.04 RCW.

* For more specific information on burn bans, visit https://www.dnr.wa.gov/Publications/rp_fire_burn_ban_factsheet.pdf