St. Paul, MN (KROC-AM News) – The current drought affecting much of Minnesota has prompted the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources to impose burning restrictions across much of the state.
85 of the state’s 87 counties are affected by the order. Within this region, the list includes Olmsted, Dodge, Fillmore, Freeborn, Goodhue, Houston, Mower, Steele, Wabasha, and Winona counties.
A statement from the DNR says the agency has halted issuing permits for the open burning of brush or yard waste until burning restrictions are lifted. The DNR is also urging Minnesotans to watch out for backyard campfires.
“Extreme drought conditions combined with dry fall vegetation, low humidity and wind create dangerous fire conditions,” said Allissa Reynolds, MNR Wildfire Prevention Supervisor. “Restricting open burning prevents a bunch of burns from escaping and becoming a wildfire.”
The DNR says burning restrictions will be adjusted as conditions change.
Earlier today, Freeborn County issued a red flag warning due to dry conditions and a forecast calling for strong winds. Sheriff Kurt Freitag says only recreational fires are still allowed, but they cannot exceed 3ft x 3ft and must be surrounded by a metal ring and kept at least 25ft from combustible materials.
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