RALEIGH NC (WWAY)– As weather conditions improve in eastern North Carolina, the burn ban is expected to be lifted in eighteen counties.
The ban for Beaufort, Bladen, Brunswick, Carteret, Columbus, Craven, Dare, Duplin, Hyde, Jones, Lenoir, New Hanover, Onslow, Pamlico, Pender, Pitt, Tyrrell and Washington counties will be lifted as of 5 p.m. Monday.
The ban went into effect on May 30 due to extremely dry conditions in the area.
Burn permits are now available in these counties, however caution is strongly advised with any open fire as careless debris burns are the leading cause of wildfires in North Carolina.
“We’re thankful for the recent rainfall and improved conditions which have lessened much of the wildfire risk in the Coastal area,” Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler said. “Even with the burn ban in place, wildland firefighters with our N.C. Forest Service responded to 53 wildfires covering 342 acres within those burn ban counties. The ban’s purpose was to prevent human-caused fires, freeing up responders to focus on wildfires naturally caused by lightning.”
The online burn permit system is open again statewide. All burn permits previously granted within the 18 burn ban counties were cancelled when the ban was implemented so new permit applications must be submitted. Online burn permits are available at www.ncforestservice.gov or in-person from local agent within each county.
Residents with questions regarding their specific county can contact their county ranger with the N.C. Forest Service or their county fire marshal’s office.