Due to an increased fire risk in correlation with the recent dry weather conditions, the N.C. Forest Service has issued a ban on all open burning, (and has canceled all burning permits), for 18 eastern North Carolina counties, which includes Dare and Hyde Counties.
The following counties in Eastern North Carolina are affected by the ban: Beaufort, Bladen, Brunswick, Carteret, Columbus, Craven, Dare, Duplin, Hyde, Jones, Lenoir, New Hanover, Onslow, Pamlico, Pender, Pitt, Tyrrell and Washington.
The burning ban went into effect at 5 p.m. on Thursday, May 30, and will remain in effect until further notice. The N.C. Forest Service will continue to monitor conditions.
Under North Carolina law, the ban prohibits all open burning in the affected counties, regardless of whether a permit was issued. The issuance of any new permits has also been suspended until the ban is lifted. Violating the burn ban incurs a $100 fine plus $180 court costs. The person responsible for setting a fire may be liable for reimbursing the N.C. Forest Service for any expenses related to extinguishing it.
“The dry weather conditions these last few weeks, plus the potential for an increase in human-caused wildfires in the region, makes this ban on open burning necessary,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “During the month of May, there have been 355 wildfires statewide, covering 1,348 acres. This burn ban is a proactive step to protect lives and property by preventing human-caused wildfires.”
Local fire departments and law enforcement officers are assisting the N.C. Forest Service in enforcing the burn ban.
For more information on statewide drought conditions and advisements from the Dare County Fire Marshall, click here.
For more information on wildfire risk assessments and preparedness / prevention plans, visit the N.C. Forest Service website at https://www.ncforestservice.gov/fire_control/fc_wui.htm.