Burning ban still in effect for area

Published 9:55 am Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office is reiterating its restriction issued earlier this month on the use of burning permits.

Chief Deputy Glen Strom said there has not been substantial countywide rain to lift the restriction, and windy conditions have also contributed to dryness.

In the last three weeks eight grass and field fires were reported in Freeborn County and one in Albert Lea, according to the Freeborn County Records Department.

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The county restriction has been in place since Oct. 8

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources lists Freeborn County as being in a “high” fire danger rating, meaning fires may start easily and spread at a fast rate. The DNR stated fires can become serious and difficult to control unless they are doused quickly while still small.

People who contact the Law Enforcement Center will be told all burning by permit has been suspended. People who elect to burn after being advised not to, or those who burn without a permit, are in violation of Minnesota’s open burning laws and are subject to citation and prosecution.

The restrictions coincide with a U.S. Drought Monitor report released last Thursday, which lists Freeborn County as being in “extreme drought.” Ninety-six percent of the state is listed as being in moderate or extreme drought.