County imposes burn ban

The Kitsap County Fire Chiefs’ Association (KCFCA) has announced its members will join with a host of other local agencies to ban most outdoor fires effective through Sept. 30.

Under the ban, outdoor burning permits are temporarily suspended and no outdoor burning will be allowed except for cooking fires in contained barbecue units and recreational fires.

Recreational fires need to be built in a designated fire pit space no larger than three feet in diameter.

The fire can only contain seasoned firewood or charcoal briquettes and is located in a space well clear of vegetation, 25 feet from buildings, fences and anything flammable and must be attended by an adult at all times with immediate access to a shovel and a water source.

Plans for future bans will be implemented every summer from July 15 until Sept. 30.

Local fire officials, in an effort to provide the public with consistent and easy-to-follow rules, will follow the same guidlines.

“Outdoor burning is the most common cause of dangerous wildland fires,” said KCFCA President and North Kitsap Fire and Rescue Chief Dan Smith. “Historical data shows that we usually start seeing a sharp increase in local brush fires around mid-July as summer weather saps moisture from area vegetation.”

Citing the budget pressures being experienced by all levels of government, Smith — who also serves as South Puget Sound Region Fire Resource Coordinator — noted that the ban is a proactive measure to limit the need for expensive wildland responses statewide.

For more information on outdoor burning and local restrictions, contact South Kitsap Fire and Rescue at (360) 871-2425 or (800) 323-BURN.

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