Burn ban is now in effect

The King County fire marshal has issued a fire safety burn ban in unincorporated areas of King County, including Vashon. It went into effect last Saturday because of the dry conditions and minimal rainfall expected in the near future. It will remain in effect until further notice.

This is a Phase 1 burn ban and applies to all outdoor burning except for small recreational fires in established fire pits at approved campgrounds or private property with the owner’s permission. Recreational fires must be built in a metal or concrete fire pit, such as those typically found in designated campgrounds and not be used as debris disposal; grow no larger than 3 feet in diameter; be located in a clear spot free from any vegetation for at least 10 feet in a horizontal direction, including at least 25 feet away from any structure, and allow 20-foot vertical clearance from overhanging branches; and be attended at all times by an individual with equipment capable of extinguishing the fire.

Summer wildfires — and the accompanying smoky hazes that shroud the region — are becoming routine in Washington state and affect local air quality. Last year, there were roughly 10 wildfires across the state, costing the state $140 million to put out. According to the state Department of Natural Resources, 75 percent of wildfires in Washington are caused by human behavior.

For more information, visit the King County Department of Permitting and Environmental Review Fire Marshal’s website.

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