Washington County, VA declares local emergency due to dry weather conditions

ABINGDON, VA (WJHL) – Officials in Washington County, VA have declared a local emergency and have issued a burn ban due to what they are calling “fire hazard conditions that create extreme fire danger.”

Emergency officials say October was an extremely dry month. They also say that “no significant rainfall is expected for weeks.”

The burn ban began this morning at 11:00 a.m.

The following is a declaration of the emergency from county officials:

This DECLARATION OF EMERGENCY DUE TO DRY WEATHER CONDITIONS in accordance with Section 44-146.21 and 15.2-922.1 of the Code of Virginia and hereby establishes a ban on open-air burning for the County of Washington until further notice and putting on alert the response and recovery programs of all applicable local and inter jurisdictional emergency operations plans should activation be warranted.

Experience has shown that suspending open burning is an effective way of preventing fire escapes and allows a quick fire agency response, especially as Washington County continues to experience warmer and drier weather. Although all fires cannot be prevented through a burn suspension, their numbers can be significantly reduced. Washington County Department of Emergency Management wants to remind everyone that it is each individual’s responsibility to help prevent fires that destroy lives, property, and our wildland.
The ban on burning is applicable to public and private property and will remain in effect until Washington County receives a significant amount of precipitation to reduce the fire danger.

Contact Tim Estes, Coordinator of Emergency Management at 276-525-1330 if additional information is needed.

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