Worsening air quality conditions in North Central Washington are prompting Stage 1 burn bans to be added for Okanogan, Ferry, Stevens and Pend Oreille counties, and an existing ban to extend in Kittitas County over the weekend and through the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.
The new burn bans will start at 10 a.m. Friday and all will continue through noon on Tuesday, when conditions will be re-evaluated, according to the Washington Department of Ecology. Light winds and strong inversions in the region mean air pollution may reach unhealthy levels.
Under a Stage 1 ban, all outdoor burning is prohibited including residential, agricultural and forest burning. Use of uncertified wood stoves, fireplaces, inserts, and other uncertified wood-burning devices are prohibited unless they are a home’s only adequate source of heat. Cleaner burning certified wood stoves, pellet stoves and other certified wood-burning devices are allowed.
Call 866-211-6284 if you think someone is illegally burning or you are impacted by smoke. Up-to-date burn ban information is available at www.waburnbans.net.
Ecology’s burn bans do not apply on tribal reservations, where the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has jurisdiction. Call 800-424-4372 for tribal burn ban information or visit EPA’s Washington Burn Ban page on their website.