NEWPORT — Vermonters are being advised to postpone all outdoor burning through at least May 30.
The state says open burning creates the risk of an escaped fire and puts pressure on emergency personnel.
“Given that Vermont is currently experiencing community-wide spread of COVID-19, there is a need to minimize any additional pressure on emergency personnel both in terms of response and unnecessary potential contact with people who may have COVID-19,” a statement issued by the Agency of Natural Resources reads.
To date, very few wildland fires have been reported in Vermont this year.
However, April and May are historically the most active months for wildland fires in the state, and most of these fires occur as a result of escaped debris burns.
Looking ahead, temperatures are predicted to be above average and precipitation below normal through mid-April.
Given these forecasted conditions, the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation’s Wildland Fire Program anticipates that this spring has the potential to be an active wildland fire season.
Postponing open burning until conditions improve will eliminate the need for emergency personnel to respond to an unnecessary event.
Vermont’s Town Forest Fire Wardens have the statutory authority to stop issuing burn permits and many fire wardens throughout the state have taken this precautionary step.