Forestry officials urging public to comply with burning ban or face criminal and civil penalties

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – After experiencing a sizable uptick in fires across the state in recent weeks, leaders with the Division of Forestry are sternly urging residents across West Virginia to adhere to the ongoing ban on all outdoor burning.

“We need residents to do their part by complying with the burning ban,” Division of Forestry Director and State Forester Barry Cook said. “The burn ban applies to all residents. You are not exempt at your home, even though it’s your personal property, you are subject to a fine if you break this ban.”Violators can face heavy civil fines and even criminal charges. Fines for misdemeanor convictions can cost up to $1,000, plus a $200 civil penalty.

In the month of September alone, West Virginia experienced more than 90 fires and approximately 600 burnt acres, statewide.

“We have actually had entire fire seasons where that was the total number of acres that might have been burned,” Cook said. “It’s unusual to have any significant fires in September.

“Please help us here. Abide by the burn ban,” Cook said. “It’s not because we want to do this, it really is for your protection and your property. A spark today can set a fire.”

The burning ban went into effect Sept. 20, as the result of forecasts for continued above-average temperatures and below-average rainfall statewide.

The ban will remain in effect until Gov. Jim Justice rescinds the order by proclamation.

“This ban helps ensure we are doing what we can to protect our forests, the public, and private property from the damage that could occur from a forest fire,” Cook said.

The ban prohibits all outdoor burning. The only exceptions are:

Fires for the purpose of chemical production, where fire is essential to operation.

Fires for commercial land-clearing, such as mining, highway construction, and development, provided that a permit is obtained from the Division of Forestry prior to burning.

Training fires conducted under the direct control and supervision of qualified instructors at a training facility operated by a fire department or government entity; provided that a permit for such training fires is obtained from the Division of Forestry prior to burning.

Fires for outdoor cooking conducted for fundraising events and charitable organizations; provided that a water source capable of extinguishing the fire must be present and that a permit is obtained from the Division of Forestry prior to burning.

Liquid-fueled gas grills, lanterns, or liquid-fueled gas fire stoves.

Fires built for warming or cooking within fireplaces or fire rings at designated federal and state recreation areas, provided area managers have the authority and discretion to continue the ban on open burning within any designated areas

SHOPS & SERVICES

Featured

St. Joseph’s Hospital recognizes Advanced Practice Providers

BUCKHANNON, W.Va. – St. Joseph’s Hospital recognized the contributions of their Advance Practice Providers (APP) during National Advanced Practice Week from September 26 to 30.  Jennifer Dorazio, Director of Ancillary Services and Ambulatory Clinics, personally

Fish Hawk Acres invites community to events this October

BUCKHANNON – Mark your calendar: Fish Hawk Acres will offer several exciting events this month. Experience the fun and fine dining of Fish Hawk Acres through their Wine Clubs and Farm Dinner Series. Register for

A ‘Dicken’s Christmas’ coming to downtown Buckhannon this holiday season

BUCKHANNON – Buckhannon will go back in time this holiday season to celebrate a Dicken’s Christmas this December. Becki Westfall attended the Sept. 22 Consolidated Public Works meeting to request street closures and the use of Jawbone Park for a […]

There’s more to this story! Become a premium member to unlock immediate access to daily, in-depth local news that matters to you. Signing up is easy — just tap the button below.

SHOPS & SERVICES

BUHS Girls Soccer Feature Image

Soccer Lady Bucs down Brooke

WELLSBURG – The Buckhannon-Upshur Lady Buc soccer team went 1-2 during a three-game stretch on the road. Last Saturday, the Lady Bucs suffered a 2-0 defeat at the hands of George Washington and followed that up with a 3-0 loss […]

There’s more to this story! Become a premium member to unlock immediate access to daily, in-depth local news that matters to you. Signing up is easy — just tap the button below.

Football Little Bucs roll past Tucker Valley, 38-14

TENNERTON – Brody McDaniels threw for two touchdowns and 84 yards as the Buckhannon-Upshur Middle School Little Bucs cruised to a 38-14 win over visiting Tucker Valley Thursday night at Freal “Red” Crites Memorial Stadium. Going to a spread offense […]

There’s more to this story! Become a premium member to unlock immediate access to daily, in-depth local news that matters to you. Signing up is easy — just tap the button below.

Falkenstein and Shreve run one and two as Lady Bucs win Polar Bear Invitational

FAIRMONT – Lydia Falkenstein and Samantha Shreve ran first and second to lead the Buckhannon-Upshur Lady Buc cross country team to a victory in the five-team Polar Bear Invitational Saturday afternoon. Falkenstein clocked a winning time of 18:22.9, while Shreve […]

There’s more to this story! Become a premium member to unlock immediate access to daily, in-depth local news that matters to you. Signing up is easy — just tap the button below.

SHOPS & SERVICES

St. Joseph’s Hospital recognizes Advanced Practice Providers

BUCKHANNON, W.Va. – St. Joseph’s Hospital recognized the contributions of their Advance Practice Providers (APP) during National Advanced Practice Week from September 26 to 30.  Jennifer Dorazio, Director of Ancillary Services and Ambulatory Clinics, personally

2023 West Virginia Wildlife Calendar now available to purchase

SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.VA. — The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources today announced that the 2023 West Virginia Wildlife Calendar is now available to purchase online at WVstateparks.com. “If you’re a hunter, angler or outdoor