Governor Issues Statewide Burn Ban For Oklahoma

Friday, August 3rd 2012, 11:38 am
By: News 9

Gov. Mary Fallin has issued at statewide burn ban for all 77 Oklahoma counties due to worsening drought conditions. It is effective immediately.

The governor's burn ban supersedes all county burn bans currently in place.

"Extreme heat and ongoing drought have created conditions very conducive to wildfires," said Gov. Fallin. "A statewide burn ban is now necessary to reduce the risk of preventable wildfires and to protect lives and property."

Oklahoma Forestry Services recommended the ban because conditions are ripe for wildfires and grass fires. The governor urged people to be extremely vigilant because it could be very easy to spark a large fire.

"Lit cigarettes, flat tires and cars parked in dry grass can quickly become dangerous. Everyone must do their part to help prevent fires and to keep our families and businesses safe from harm," Gov. Fallin said.

State Forester George Geissler said reports of fire activity across the state are increasing and Oklahomans should report any fire they see immediately.

"Any fire that starts has the potential to burn very intensely and be difficult to extinguish," said Geissler. "It is critical that anyone who sees a fire report it to the nearest fire department as soon as possible."

Under the statewide burn ban, people are not allowed to burn bonfires or campfires. Setting off fireworks is prohibited, as is burning trash, debris, grass, woods or other outdoor materials.

The ban allows gas and charcoal grilling provided that it is over a nonflammable surface and at least five feet from flammable vegetation. There are also exemptions for a number of items such as welding and road construction.

View a complete list of activities allowed and prohibited under the governor's statewide burn ban.