Following several brush fires Saturday, risk remains high in St. Lawrence County; burn ban in effect until May 15
Sunday, May 5, 2013 - 9:31 am

Following several brush fires in St. Lawrence County on Saturday, fire officials are warning residents that the risk of outdoor fires remains very high due to dry conditions.

A state-wide outdoor burn ban also remains in effect until May 15, said Joe Lacks, investigator and public fire and life safety officer with the county Bureau of Fire.

Saturday, several stubborn brush fires kept fire departments throughout the county very busy, Lacks said.

“Even though the grass and trees are starting to green, most of the land and underbrush is easily ignited,” he said in a prepared statement. “Many of these fires are started by illegal burning and are subject to heavy fines by law enforcement and the NYS DEC,” he said.

He said several residents in the county have been ticketed for illegal burning.

With the current dry conditions, “homes and other structures are very easily ignited by grass and brush fires,” he said. Fires can also be caused by discarded smoking materials, he added.

“Please use common sense during this time of dry land and forest conditions,” he said.

It is possible the burn ban will be extended if the dry weather continues, Lacks said. He urged area residents to check for burn ban information on local media sites.