In keeping with the recommendations of our area fire partners, Douglas County Fire District #2 is suspending all backyard debris burning and use of burn barrels effective immediately. This is due to unseasonably warm weather forecasted throughout the remainder of the week as well as dry and windy conditions coupled with lower relative humidity readings. Check back for updates next week.
Douglas County Fire District No.2 has opened up burning for small yard debris piles. Although weather conditions have brought about cooler temperatures and increased moisture, we urge the public to use extra caution when burning and to comply with all applicable burning regulations.
Residential (Backyard) burning includes DRY yard debris, trimmings and clippings only. The burning of standing berry vines, grass or weeds, paper, wood products, plastics, auto parts, tires, wire insulation, household garbage, construction materials, materials from land clearing or other non-yard debris items is prohibited. Backyard burning may not be done on another person’s property or on vacant lots.
Backyard burning is only allowed during daylight hours and shall not be conducted within 50 feet of any structure or other combustible material or property line. Clearance from structures and other combustible materials may be reduced as follows: Not less than 15 feet when burning is conducted in an approved burning appliance such as a burn barrel, or not less than 25 feet when the burn pile size is no larger than 3 feet in diameter x 2 feet high.
Fires shall be supervised (direct line of sight) by an adult at all times. Tools and/or garden hoses to control or extinguish the fire must be available on site at all times.
A permit from Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is required for Industrial, Commercial, Construction Waste and Demolition Waste.
Douglas County has numerous alternative methods available to residents. For a list of these alternatives please refer to: Recycle Power.org or call (541)440-4268
With fire conditions moderating throughout he Umpqua Valley, fire officials with the Douglas Forest Protective Association will begin working with farmers, ranchers and other landowners to complete prescribed burns throughout the area. Prescribed burns may be conducted on fields, pastures and hillsides to promote productive grazing lands for livestock and to improve habitat for wildlife, while reducing the buildup of flammable vegetation. Burn permits for backyard debris burning, including both debris piles and burn barrels, will not be issued at this time.
Over the last five years, local landowner’s working with DFPA have averaged a combined total of about 3,500 acres of prescribed burns annually, throughout the Douglas District. For many agricultural landowners, fire is used as a tool to prepare their lands for the next growing season by removing noxious weeds, brush, insects, and plant disease from their lands. Prescribed burns are also beneficial to firefighters by reducing the buildup of brush and other flammable vegetation throughout the area.
Before fire is introduced onto the landscape, prescribed burns are made safe by the construction of fire trails around the proposed burn site. In addition, landowners must be able to demonstrate that they have the ability and resources in the form of fire suppression equipment and personnel on site to maintain control of the prescribed burn. Once fire trails are approved by DFPA and weather conditions are favorable, a permit may be issued to complete the prescribed burn.
Fire officials say that the effects from the prescribed burns on populated areas will be minimized by allowing the burns to only take place when both fire conditions and weather patterns are favorable for a safe, effective burn. By coordinating when and where prescribed burns occur, the smoke impacts to the surrounding areas, can be mitigated.