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Outside burning discouraged in Missouri due to weather conditions

The following counties are currently experiencing extreme drought: Barry, Christian, Greene, Lawrence and Stone
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — State Fire Marshal Tim Bean is urging Missouri residents to stop outdoor burning until conditions improve.

In a press release from the Department of Public Safety Division of Fire Safety for the state, officials said outside burning is discouraged because of the threat of fires rapidly spreading because of a lack of significant rainfall, low humidity values, dry fuels, gusty winds and warm temperatures.

Portions of southwest Missouri are currently experiencing extreme drought conditions.

“Under the current drought and weather conditions, even a small outdoor fire can get out of control and spread rapidly, with the potential for property damage and injury,” State Fire Marshal Bean said. “It is extremely important for all Missourians to remain vigilant about the fire danger across the state and to help avoid tragedies resulting from ill-advised outdoor burning.”

The following counties are currently experience extreme drought: Barry, Christian, Greene, Lawrence and Stone.

Officials said many Missourians have been spending more time on home improvements as the coronavirus pandemic continues. Those projects can include gathering and burning leaves, limbs, dead trees, grass, and other debris. Bean urged Missourians to delay any burning and to comply with local recommendations.

While Missouri is not known for the large wildland fires that regularly affect some western states, dry conditions, low humidity and strong winds can often combine to create dangerous brush and wildland fires, officials said. 

Bean also wanted to remind Missourians to never throw out lit cigarettes and always check for local burn bans or restrictions before conducting any open burning.

For questions or concerns about outdoor burning, please contact the Division of Fire Safety at 573-751-2930. 

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