Dry weather keeps fire danger high in south King County

Puget Sound Regional Fire Authority

With continued temperatures in the high 70s to mid-80s over the next two weeks, the fire danger in the Puget Sound area remains high.

On July 15, King County issued a phase one burn ban due to the extremely dry ground conditions. A phase one ban prohibits all outdoor burning except small fires for recreational purposes.

As many people have seen, brush and grass fires spread very quickly, can endanger buildings, and are a visual distraction when near roadways.

Do your part to reduce the chance of a fire by following these simple rules:

• Always dispose of cigarettes in an ashtray or a metal container. Never throw burning material out a vehicle window. Fines for doing so will cost you over $1,000 and you can be held responsible for any damage a fire may cause.

• Ensure that trailer safety chains are well off the ground. Dragging chains can cause sparks. Keep in mind that when your vehicle turns a corner, the chains on one side will sag lower.

• Check with your local fire department before starting any type of outdoor fire to ensure there are no bans, and know the regulations governing the size and contents of the fire.

• Do not discharge fireworks. All fireworks are illegal at this time.

• Report brush and grass fires immediately to 911. If along a highway, try to use mile markers, exit signs, or other landmarks to help responders locate the fire.

For many years we have seen the picture of Smokey Bear saying, “only you can prevent forest fires.” That’s good advice since the vast majority of fires in Western Washington are caused by humans and can be prevented.

Do your part.