MECKLENBURG COUNTY, NC (FOX 46) - Due to increased fire risk, extreme dry conditions and in partnership with the Mecklenburg County Fire Marshal's Office; the Huntersville Fire Department, Cabarrus County and Iredell County has also banned all open burning effective immediately.
This burn ban included recreational fires.
Fire officials said this ban on open burning is necessary due to the potential for the increase in human-caused fires, which could result in wildfires like those currently in western North Carolina.
Open burning includes burning leaves, branches and other plant material. In all cases, it is illegal to burn trash, lumber, tires, newspapers, plastics or other non-vegetative materials.
Fire officials said as previously mentioned, this burn ban includes recreational fires. Recreational fires include: fire pits, bonfires and camp fires.
Cooking fires, such as grills and cookers, are still permitted but with extreme caution.
This ban is in effect until further notice.
The Mecklenburg County Fire Marshal’s Office would like to offer the following safety tips to prevent a woodlands fire:
- Fire officials ask that the public be vigilant in following these rules and to use good common sense when enjoying the outdoors.
- Avoid grilling on or near wooden decks, grass or pine straw.
- Keep water handy in case of fire.
- Dispose of smoking materials properly.
- Avoid parking vehicles in dry grass when the hot pollution control equipment could come into contact with dry vegetation.
- An adult should always be present during open burning and grilling and children and pets should be kept a safe distance away.
- Use spark arresters for chimneys to prevent ashes from going up the flue into the neighborhood and starting fires.
- Never use gasoline, kerosene or any other flammable liquid to start a fire because the risk of personal injury is high.
Have Fire Control Tools on Hand:
- Have fire extinguishment material on hand at all times, such as a water hose, water supply, shovels and rakes.
- Check water supply before igniting the fire. Be very cautious if you attempt to control a brush fire yourself. Wildfires move very rapidly and can severely burn you.
- When camping, extinguish all fires and embers before nightfall or leaving area.
Watch the Wind:
- Be prepared to extinguish all open burning if the wind picks up or weather changes. Use common sense in dry and windy weather. Sudden wind change is how most open burning gets out of control.
Don’t Wait to Call for Help
- If the fire should get out of control, call 911 immediately.
- If you or your family is in danger, evacuate the area immediately.