|County-wide burn ban finally lifted by commissioners court|
|Faith Huffman | News-Telegram News Editor|
After several months without respite, the burn ban in Hopkins County was finally lifted Monday afternoon.
Hopkins County commissioners, during their regular Monday session, determined that conditions were favorable for lifting all restrictions of the burn ban. The ban was put in place on June 26, when drought conditions necessitated a disaster declaration and the burn ban, which restricted outdoor burning and restrictions on fireworks during the Independence Day holiday.
Commissioners noted that 80 of the 84 calls county and volunteer fire departments responded to during the first 26 days of June were for brush, grass or timber fires, the other four involved trash being burned.
Commissioners cited three things as determining factors in the lifting on the burn ban Monday afternoon. The factors were the significant decrease in the number of calls for wild fires during the month of September, at least six separate rain showers resulting in much-needed precipitation in recent weeks, and also lowered the county's risk rating on the Keetch Byram Drought Index.
While all conditions and restriction of the burn ban were lifted, Hopkins County Fire Chief Carl Nix urged county residents taking advantage of the changed burn status to get rid of brush, trash and other debris to be extremely cautious when burning. The drought conditions have eased but still could present a fire danger if caution is not exhibited.