Forest fires are burning across the Smokey Mountains and the Dry conditions are not Smokey the bear’s friend. These increase the risk, and it’s at high right now With the prolonged period of dry weather that we’ve seen, rain is welcomed. Many spots in the region have not seen anywhere near the amount of rain that we should have seen. Chris White, West Virginia Forestry Fire Specialist, told us ” With the low dew points and humidities, where it’s been such a prolonged period of that also, has effected our fires in fact that it just takes a very small spark or ember to cross our lines and start a new fire.”
The fall fire season started in October. Since then around 2 thousand acres have burned in southern West Virginia alone. Lewisburg is more than 4 inches below their normal rain totals, and Bluefield is more than 3 inches below their normal values. After we see significant rain fall, it lowers the forest fire risk. Chris White, West Virginia Forestry Fire Specialist, said ” so looking forward to that and some rest. The McDowell County guys are really getting wore out. They have been at it, uh, pretty much daily for the last three weeks.” Tazewell and Bland counties in Virginia are under a burn ban until we see significant rain. Fall fire season lasts through December. Until then outdoor burning is prohibited from 7am to 5pm. You are only allowed to only burn outdoor vegetation.