State ag commissioner lifts burn ban for most of Eastern NC, state

North Carolina

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCT) — North Carolina Agricultural Commissioner Steve Troxler has lifted the burn ban for most of North Carolina, including areas of Eastern N.C.

WNCN reports the ban, which went into place on Nov. 29, is still in place for 33 counties, many in western NC. The counties where the ban was lifted include:

  • Anson
  • Beaufort
  • Bertie
  • Bladen
  • Brunswick
  • Cabarrus
  • Camden
  • Carteret
  • Catawba
  • Chatham
  • Cherokee
  • Chowan
  • Clay
  • Cleveland
  • Columbus
  • Craven
  • Cumberland
  • Currituck
  • Dare
  • Duplin
  • Edgecombe
  • Franklin
  • Gaston
  • Gates
  • Graham
  • Greene
  • Halifax
  • Harnett
  • Haywood
  • Hertford
  • Hoke
  • Hyde
  • Iredell
  • Jackson
  • Johnston
  • Jones
  • Lee
  • Lenoir
  • Lincoln
  • Macon
  • Martin
  • Mecklenburg
  • Montgomery
  • Moore
  • Nash
  • New Hanover
  • Northampton
  • Onslow
  • Pamlico
  • Pasquotank
  • Pender
  • Perquimans
  • Pitt
  • Richmond
  • Robeson
  • Rutherford
  • Sampson
  • Scotland
  • Stanly
  • Swain
  • Tyrrell
  • Union
  • Wake
  • Warren
  • Washington
  • Wayne
  • Wilson

Before the previous burn ban, there was one in May, the previous fire season.

Philip Jackson, public information officer with the N.C. Forest Service, said there were multiple variables that led to the current ban such as windy conditions and lack of rainfall.

“We have fire environment and weather experts that assess conditions on a day to day basis. and the ban itself is reassessed on a day to day basis,” Jackson said. “Given the recent rainfall, the conditions have improved enough to where the fire risk to the point where the forest service is comfortable lifting the burn ban from those select counties.”

Burn bans are not uncommon this time of year. There are actually two wildfire seasons, from March to May and from October to Decemnber.

“The biggest thing we’re seeing is wind-blown fires, its very windy conditions this time of year,” said Jim McArthur, deputy director for Pitt County Emergency Management. “Fire travels with that and dry conditions just help it. We need people to be mindful of the risks associated with the burning.”

Even though the ban has been lifted for Eastern North Carolina, the NC Forest Service still continues to monitor conditions.

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