Safely prepare for West Virginia’s burn season

Published: Sep. 5, 2022 at 6:41 PM EDT
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KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) - As summer draws near a close, the West Virginia Division of Forestry warns anyone who may choose to burn to do so to do it in a safe manner.

Outdoor burning is not the only risk during fire season.

“A lot of dry weather, the ground gets dry, accidents happen. Whether it’s cigarette butts are thrown out or there’s not a big enough ring around the fire people are burning in, they get calls of a brush fire starting,” said Zach Bess, a firefighter with the Sissonville Fire Department.

Bess said a 10-foot ring should be cleared around a burn pit and to only burn organic materials like leaves, brush and yard clippings.

“If you don’t follow those measures, you obviously are at risk for starting a brush fire that could lead to other property owners having damage, damaging homes and some hefty fines for the state,” he said.

Additionally, Bess said fall marks a good time to test smoke detector batteries and get a fire extinguisher for the home.

“With drier weather: lawn equipment, weed eaters, dry leaves - definitely watch where they are set,” he said.

“Some measures ahead you can take keep those leaves blown out of your yard: keep them at the wood line and that’ll keep them to the woods, which will prevent them from spreading from property to property.”

Outdoor burn season runs from Oct. 1- Dec. 31.

Apply for a permit here.