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Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

Posted by okiedawn Z7 OK (My Page) on
Mon, Jul 30, 12 at 19:28

As of today, there now are Burn Bans in effect in 49 Oklahoma counties. You can see them on the map below.

If you want to read the text of your county commissioner's burn ban, click on your county on the list that is below the map.

Despite the burn bans, there were several big fires in Oklahoma today. The burn bans surely do reduce the number, but there's still going to be fires.

Dawn

Here is a link that might be useful: OFS Burn Ban County Map


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

I hate to admit it, but I miss cooking outside. Some foods just tastes exceptionally well cooked in cast iron over an open flame. I considered cheating yesterday but thought better of it. Even the most attentive burns can be hazardous. Like, what about embers in the smoke blowing afar into someone else's field. It's just not worth it.

I've been doing all cooking in the wee hours of the morning and the rest of the day contains cold foods. Meh, we're not starving. lol

bon


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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

I'd be remiss if I did not add: "I'm glad I do not live in India." The population in India that is without power (or has been) is equivalent to twice the population in the entire United States. That's gotta suck!


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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

I heard that about India. It is just terrible.

In this heat and with the level of dryness, we've stopped grilling outside, even though it is a gas grill and we place it on the patio. Even beside the patio, the grass is green, but Tim is not taking any chances. Fires are just starting too easily.

Anyhow, who needs a grill or oven or microwave. We can just put our food in a frying pan and fry it on top of the concrete.

Dawn


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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

hahaha That is SO true. hehe


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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

"I think with the temperatures the way they are we are very close to looking at the possibility of a statewide burn ban," said [governor] Fallin.

bout time!

bon


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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

Ah, I see Fallin has also declared an emergency. I assume this will help free up any financial restrictions and equipment for the fire fighters?


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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

It is very important to note that the with the way the county burn ban law is written, it can be difficult for any single county to meet all 4 requirements until they already have raging fires. Often, you can meet 2 or 3 but not the 4th until conditions are incredibly bad. One of the requirements is that a certain percentage of the fires must be incredibly difficult to control. That means we aren't being proactive and preventing really bad wildfires with an earlier burn ban. Instead we are being more reactive and only able to qualify for the burn ban after we've already had very destructive fires. That is just wrong. So, if Gov. Fallin would go ahead and put a burn ban into place, which generally occurs only after OFS has recommended such a step to the state's governor, then counties like mine that cannot meet all 4 requirements at the present time might be able to avoid having an insanely bad fire season. Our county's fire chiefs discussed this last night at the monthly fire chief's meeting and Tim expressed his hope that Gov. Fallin would implement a statewide burn ban because it is our best hope here in our county.

The state of emergency does nothing special for the firefighting crews. What it does do is make it easier for state agencies to be more proactive in dealing with drought-related issues. It certainly does not free up funding or equipment for the firefighters, I'm very sorry to say. In this state, we are lucky if the money we get from the state covers even a portion of our fuel bill for the year. Our legislature has cut the already meager amount of money fire departments get the last 2 or 3 years, so we're being asked to put out more fires with fewer resources.

About the only way this declaration helps fire departments is that it is the first step towards a federal disaster declaration. With a fed disaster declaration, we sometimes can be reimbursed by FEMA for certain firefighting expenses. It requires a ton of paperwork and you wait at least a couple of years to be reimbursed, so it isn't a quick fix type thing.


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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

That was the first time I read the requirements and my chin dropped. Basically, a heat-related fire has to already have happened. Dat's ridiculous. I understand the imperative to maintain people's rights but so many lives and property can be saved if they'd change that. *sigh

Sorry to hear about the red tape. I was hoping for something more reasonable from government issued assistance but I should have known better.


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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

Pottawatomie County is a great example. When their fire chiefs, emergency management personnel and county commissioners sat down to discuss a burn ban, they looked closely at the requirements and determined their county did not meet all 4 requirements. So, even though it seemed they wanted to pass a burn ban, in good conscience they could not. A couple of days later they had a massive fire. The next week they implemented a burn ban because they felt that they now met the criteria. Why does it have to be that way? Why can't we legally implement a burn ban before we have raging fires? That drives me up the wall.

Last night when I was typing my response above, three VFDs at the western end of our county were paged out to a grassfire. I was just shaking my head. How many fires will we have and how bad will they have to be before we meet the requirements for a burn ban? I'm really hoping the OFS encourages Gov. Fallin to pass a statewide burn ban sooner rather than later.

Don't get me wrong. Both the state and the federal government help us obtain equipment. We have a big, beautiful, very helpful/useful fire engine that's about 12 years old and we got it when it was about 10 years old. It cost us about $175,000.00 and a FEMA grant paid a large portion of that. We still have to raise somewhere between $10,000 and $15,000 ourselves and that's the hard part. You have a really limited time frame to raise a bunch of money to pay your matching share of a grant. Many small, rural VFDs like ours just don't have a large enough population in our fire district to be able to raise that sort of money in a timely manner.

I noticed yesterday and the day before that some fire chiefs and emergency management directors and other county officials are publicly asking/begging their community for donations of bottled water, Gatorade and snacks. To me, it is a shame they have to ask for these items. Why isn't their community supporting them by bringing them those items? In our county, we were that way at one point but had tremendous fires in 2005 and 2006 and set up a fund to pay for those items, then set up mechanisms (like fundraisers and annual monetary contributions from each VFD) to make sure we always have an adequate supply of Rehab supplies for our county's 14 fire departments. Many portions of our community also have bottled water drives, Gatorade drives, etc. and gather bottles drinks for our firefighters year-round. Often, when we are at a fire, or just at the fire station working, people pull up in their vehicles and start unloading cases of bottled water and hydration drinks like Gatorade and Powerade. In one day at one big wildfire with many firefighters present, we'll use hundreds and hundreds of bottled drinks. They aren't luxuries. They are essential to the health and well-being of all the firefighters and their support personnel. Without adequate and constant hydration, people can get sick and die. Why in the world are emergency personnel having to ask/beg their communities to help them? Everyone needs to help the firefighters and other emergency personnel who put their lives on the line daily.

OK, I'm climb down off my soapbox now, but it just really frustrates me to see our emergency responders begging for help. That shouldn't happen! They are always the first to respond in any emergency, and not just fires, but also motor vehicle accidents, plane and train crashes, floods, power outages, severe storms, etc. We need to help the folks who always are willing to help us.

The burn ban list was up to 52 or 53 late yesterday and may go up more today. This place is a tinderbox. Our gardens aren't the only things dry now---everything is too dry.

Dawn


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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

That is so sad. Everyone is always distracted and we need go back to old community ways to resolve the problem. Otherwise, the only answer is increasing awareness which is likened to flagging down people and shoving fliers in their faces. Or the only solution is to allow the problem to grow. After houses start burning down people might wake up but we really don't want that to happen. I hope it is not because most people cannot afford to help, but that may be a growing problem.

I can't imagine your frustration. :(

bon


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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

I'm not frustrated for us, because in our county, people bring us water and Gatorade often. I am frustrated on behalf of all the emergency personnel, whether paid or volunteer, who don't have that sort of support. Lots of people never even think about their firefighters until it is their own place that is on fire. Then, suddenly, they care a lot about their firefighters. :) We never should see a county official pleading for the public to bring water and Gatorade for their firefighters. I'm not blaming the county officials or the fire chiefs---and I am glad they are trying to get the word out. I just don't understand why their communities are not supporting them. That's all.

At two separate wrecks on the interstate today, our FFs left the station with full coolers of iced drinks on their trucks. I know that at the second wreck, my DS was walking around offering bottles of water and Gatorade to everyone there--firefighters, medics, cops, tow truck drivers, the people involved in the wreck and even their dogs. That's what every Oklahoman should do, especially in this heat---look out for everyone else. It has hit 112 here today, though now it has cooled down to 111, and nobody should be out in this heat without a cold bottle of something to drink.

A few weeks ago a local businessman had some kind of gathering where he supplied bottled water in 1.5 liter bottles. At the end of it, he had about 10 cases left and donated them to our VFD. We appreciate people like that much more than words can say.

At the rate that watering restrictions are being enacted this week, he may wish he'd kept those 10 cases of bottled water to pour onto his lawn.


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RE: Latest Burn Ban Count is 49, Map Linked

"That's what every Oklahoman should do, especially in this heat---look out for everyone else." I couldn't agree more. Truly, I wasn't aware of these harrowing adventures until I attempted to plant a cauliflower in a stupid tire filled with clay dirt from the bottom of a pond leading me to meet you online. The importance of fighting grass fires is ever etched in my mind. Interestingly, the fire department will become our close neighbor in the near future. You can bet your booties I'll get to know 'em all and be there when I can.


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