Fire risk is increasing throughout San Juan County

The fire danger rating is "moderate" throughout San Juan County.

Fire officials raised it from being raised from "low" to "moderate" on July 22. The change was implemented by the San Juan County Fire Marshal’s office in cooperation with the fire protection districts serving Orcas, San Juan, Lopez and Shaw islands.

The state Department of Natural resources has advised that the entire region is experiencing warm, dry weather. This weather pattern is expected to continue into the foreseeable future, with very low chances for any appreciable rain. The risk of a serious fire is increasing as the area’s natural vegetation begins to dry out.

Residents and visitors are urged to be very cautious of the risk of fire.

Recreational fires, such as campfires in developed campgrounds, are still allowed. To qualify as a recreational fire, the burn area may not be more than two feet in diameter, and be surrounded on all sides by at least two feet of clearance to combustibles. Only clean, dry wood should be burned. Charcoal and propane barbecues may be used.

Remember, as Smokey Bear likes to remind everyone: All fires must be thoroughly extinguished before being left unattended.

All burn permits expired at the end of June and burn barrels are not allowed at any time of the year.

For more information, contact your local fire department, or the San Juan County Fire Marshal’s Office at 378-FIRE.

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