Numerous Burn Bans Issued Around The State - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Ash Flat, AR--Lauren Payne Reports

Numerous Burn Bans Issued Around The State

September 28, 2004--Posted at 6:30 p.m. CDT

ASH FLAT--You can see and hear how dry it is.

Arkansas is in desperate need of rain, prompting officials to issue burn bans in a majority of counties in Arkansas.

"I had one of the farmers come in from bush hogging, and he hit a rock and sparked it, and set the fire,"said Sharp County Judge, Harrold Crawford."

"To lift a burning ban you usually have to have what we call a soaking rain.  We consider this an inch to an inch and a half of rain falling slowly,"said Crawford.

Crawford says, as dry as it is now, even after rainfall, they could wait up to 48 hours to lift the ban.

"If it rains a half an inch and the sun comes out like it is today, and it's dry by noon, well, we're right back where we started,"said Crawford.

Drivers need to take caution as well.

One careless move could ignite this brittle grass or the trash on the side of the road.

Pete Reilly is the Fire Coordinator for Sharp County.

"It doesn't take much, right now in the middle of the day, when the dew is off, just a cigarette flipped out the window can easily cause a fire on the side of the road,"said Reilly.

The highway between Hoxie and Imboden became a hot bed for grass fires on Monday as officials suspect burning cigarettes ignited numerous fires.

"This time of year, a lot of property, a lot of homes, and a lot of animals are in danger.[They] need to be very careful of their trash.  No cleaning, don't try to burn off, don't light any fires, wait until we get a good rain until they do any cleaning,"said Reilly.

Citations can be issued if you are caught burning trash or leaves while under a county burn ban.

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