Tuesday, August 30, 2011 | 8:08 AM
MONTGOMERY -- As exceptionally dry weather continues across the state, many Alabama counties are experiencing an increase in wildfire occurrence. The Alabama Forestry Commission (AFC) warns that conditions are such that any fire can quickly spread out of control, destroying valuable forestland, threatening lives, and endangering homes and property. According to AFC officials, there have been 100 wildfires in the last seven days burning over 1,778 acres across the state, with five of those fires more than 100 acres in size.
“With summer winding down and the upcoming holiday weekend, we are urging everyone to use extreme caution with all debris burning and outdoor fires, including campfires,” said State Forester Linda Casey. “No burn restrictions have been issued at this time. However, the existing drought conditions, combined with lower humidity as the fall season approaches, could potentially contribute to hazardous wildfire behavior.”
It is an Alabama state law to obtain a burn permit before you burn any woodland, grassland, field, or wood debris greater than one quarter acre or within 25 feet of flammable material. Be sure to clear down to mineral soil around the area to be burned. Have enough tools, equipment, and manpower to safely control your fire. Once started, stay with the fire until it is completely out. To obtain a burn permit, call 1-800-242-2504.
For more information on the current wildfire situation, visit the AFC website at www.forestry.alabama.gov/fire_totals.aspx