OKANOGAN COUNTY COMMISSIONERS

RESOLUTION 104 - 2017

DECLARATON OF HAZARDOUS FIRE CONDITIONS


WHEREAS, Okanogan County is experiencing weather conditions that are contributing to unusual fire conditions, and the potential for large and catastrophic fires exists that may be a threat to life and cause damage or destruction to homes, businesses, orchards /farmlands and natural resources.

WHEREAS, the potential for damage to homes and businesses, orchards/farmland and natural resources is high.

WHEREAS, upon consultation with rural Fire Chiefs, Fire Districts and the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), it is hereby declared that a hazardous situation exists.

WHEREAS, Dan McCarthy, Pest Control Agent, has reported that Fire Blight has been a problem in several orchards throughout the county and the best method for preventing the spread of Fire Blight is to burn the infected trees; and,

WHEREAS, Dan McCarthy will permit the burning of infected trees in the green belt by special burn permit and after site inspection; and property owners will be required to have on site sufficient water supply and fire tools to man the burn at all times until fire is extinguished.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, by the Okanogan County Commissionersí as follows:

Section #1: That it is hereby declared that a hazardous situation exists and that actions involving various county and other local agencies must be taken to help alleviate threats and damages.

Section #2: Because of the hazardous fire conditions existing in Okanogan County there is established a burn ban by the Commissionersí on outdoor burning of combustible materials in the County. Combustible materials may include, but are not limited to, outdoor burning of yard waste and none emergent agricultural burning.

This resolution does not apply to silvicultural burning on lands regulated solely by DNRís outdoor burning rules and regulations, fire in DNR recreation sites and campgrounds, on U.S. Forest Service protected lands and within the Colville Reservation. However, the DNR, U.S. Forest Service and Colville Tribes may have similar burn bans in effect and citizens of the county are strongly encouraged to contact the DNRís burn information number at 1-800-323-BURN(2876), the U.S. forest Service Tonasket Ranger District at 509-486-2186 and Methow Valley Ranger District at 509-996-4003 or Colville Confederated Tribes at 509-634-3100 for information on current outdoor burning restrictions of each agency.

Recreational fires:

The use of gas or charcoal fired barbecues is allowed.

Exemption:

The Fire Advisory Board, Okanogan County Commissioners and or the Fire District Chief may allow a recreational fire exemption during times when outdoor burning-fires are prohibited providing:

This exemption will only apply to those improved private recreational areas located within Okanogan County. This exemption does not apply on lands assessed and regulated by DNR, on USFS lands, or on lands within the Colville Reservation as described in Section #2 of this Resolution.

Recreational fires shall not be conducted within 25 feet of a structure or combustible material. Conditions which could cause a fire to spread within 25 feet of a structure or combustible material shall be eliminated prior to ignition. Recreational fires shall be no larger than three feet in diameter and shall not be associated with any debris, yard, or garden clean-up.

Attendance:

Open burning, camp fires, or recreational fires shall be constantly attended until the fire is completely extinguished. The attendant shall have some form of fire-extinguishing equipment such as a shovel and dirt, sand, class A fire extinguisher, water barrel, garden hose, or water truck sufficient to extinguish the fire and available for immediate use.

Definitions:

Open Burning:
The burning of materials wherein the products of combustion are emitted directly into the ambient air without passing through a stack or chimney from an enclosed chamber. Open burning does not include road flares, smudge pots and similar devices associated with safety or occupational uses typically considered open flames or recreational fires. For the purpose of this definition, a chamber shall be regarded as enclosed when, during the time combustion occurs, only apertures, ducts, stacks, flues or chimneys necessary to provide combustion air and permit the escape of exhaust gas are open.

Recreational Fire:
An outdoor fire burning materials other than rubbish where the fuel being burned is not contained in an incinerator, outdoor fireplace, barbecue grill and is contained within a 3 feet or less diameter concrete or steel ring no less than 8 inches in height and has a total fuel area of 3 feet or less in diameter and 2 feet or less in height for pleasure, religious, ceremonial, cooking, warmth or similar purposes.

Section #3: This burn ban is effective July 1, 2017 and will continue to be enforced until official notice is made rescinding the burn ban by the Commissionersí.

Agriculture Burning:
Section #4: Dan McCarthy is hereby authorized to proceed with issuing special burn permits and will contact DNR, DOE, and local fire districts when arranging to burn said infected material. The board authorizes an emergency burn exemption on the burning of Fire Blight infected trees when a special permit is obtained.

Adopted June 26, 2017