Dry conditions and gusty winds expected
OLYMPIA – Effective Friday, April 10, at 12:01 a.m., the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR), in cooperation with partner agencies, is implementing the following burn restrictions on DNR-protected lands in eastern Washington. Residents are advised to check with local fire jurisdictions for additional restrictions.
- All outdoor burning, which includes permit and rule burning (small debris disposal fires), is not allowed in eastern Washington. This includes the following Fire Danger Rating Areas: Upper Yakima and Lower Basin which encompass Kittitas County, plus Blue Mountain Grass and Brush, Chelan, Foothills, Highlands, Kaniksu, Lower Yakima, Methow, Northern Blue Mountains, Valley, and Upper Basin.
A frontal passage bringing dry conditions and gusty winds over the next couple of days is the reason for the early season burn ban. The dry conditions will mean more potential for fire starts and the strong gusty winds can cause a fire to grow rapidly.
During the COVID-19 crisis, firefighters and first responders are working hard to stay healthy to ensure their readiness to respond to fires and other emergencies. The public’s compliance with this temporary burn ban will help them remain healthy and ready to respond to an emergency.
Fire Danger Rating System geographic based implemented in 2019
In eastern Washington, a new fire danger rating system was implemented in 2019. Instead of basing the fire danger rating by county, it is now based on geographic areas that share similar fuels, climate, and topography in addition to administrative boundaries and is now called Fire Danger Rating Areas (FDRA’s). This change was developed with the intent of having a common fire behavior component, and was developed through interagency collaboration to help clarify messages with multiple agencies.
Daily updates on burn restrictions and Industrial Fire Precaution Levels are available at 1-800-323-BURN or on the Fire Danger and Outdoor Burning risk map at https://fortress.wa.gov/dnr/protection/firedanger/ and Industrial Fire Precaution Levels map https://fortress.wa.gov/dnr/protection/ifpl/.
DNR’s wildfire mission
Administered by Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz, DNR is responsible for preventing and fighting wildfires on 13 million acres of private, state and tribal-owned forestlands. DNR is the state’s largest on-call fire department, with more than 1,000 employees trained and available to be dispatched to fires as needed. During fire season, this includes more than 700 DNR employees who have other permanent jobs within the agency and about 400 seasonal employees hired for firefighting duties.