October 25, 2014

Walker outlines burning restrictions

With emergency burning restrictions going into effect for storm damaged areas of northwest Wisconsin on Friday, Governor Scott Walker was on the ground Thursday to highlight the reasons why. “It’s important to remember there are new burning restrictions in place,” Walker said during a stop in Siren. “There’s still a fair amount of timber on the ground. Really in most of Burnett and the southern tip of Douglas County, that’s a lot of pine on a sand soil base. It literally lights up in many cases more quickly than throwing a match into gasoline.”

AUDIO: Governor Scott Walker (1:00) 

Portions of Burnett, Douglas, Polk and Washburn counties are impacted by these emergency burning restrictions. Under these restrictions, burning of any combustible material outdoors is prohibited until further notice. This includes:

 Combustible material in a burn pile or burn barrel

 Campfires with the exception of developed camping areas within a metal fire ring

 Smoking a cigar, cigarette, or pipe, except within an enclosed vehicle or building

 Outdoor disposal of ashes, charcoal briquettes, matches or any burning material

 All fireworks (restricted and non-restricted)

The burning restrictions are primarily due to the remaining debris from the July 1, 2011, windstorm, and above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation in the months since.

“With over 250,000 acres impacted by the storm in this area, we had to take a proactive approach by implementing these restrictions,” said Trent Marty, Director of Forest Protection. “We can’t afford a single human-caused wildfire right now within the storm boundaries, especially with spring fire season upon us.”

Kurt Mayer, WXCE