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Backyard burning now prohibited as officials declare start of fire season on June 26

Columbia County is now officially in fire season, according to area officials.

On Tuesday, June 26, Fire Chief Mike Greisen, who leads Scappoose Fire District and Columbia River Fire and Rescue, noted that all fire districts in Columbia County have entered fire season, which means backyard burning is no longer permitted.

Burning of yard debris and trash is prohibited.

Recreational burning is still permitted in a small fire pit or fire bowl that uses charcoal or dry firewood.

Weather conditions constantly change and recreational burning can be restricted if it becomes too windy or extremely dry. Fire officials recommend calling the burn line at 503-397-4800 to learn about current conditions and restrictions.

Fire pits may not be larger than three feet in diameter and no more than two feet tall. Outdoor fireplaces, fire bowls and chimineas may be used for recreational burns as well but should be kept at least 25 feet away from other combustible materials.

Officials also recommend residents keep a fire extinguisher, water barrel, garden hose, or bucket of sand nearby when burning recreationally.

Across the state, fire season is also in effect in various areas as high temperatures and dry conditions descend over the region.

Currently, fire crews are battling two separate blazes in Central Oregon, both caused by lightning strikes and reported on June 21 — the Boxcar Fire, which has burned more than 100,000 acres, and the Graham Fire, which has burned just over 2,000 acres.

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