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Closed burn season starts Friday

by LAUREN REICHENBACH
Hagadone News Network | May 9, 2024 1:00 AM

Closed burning season starts Friday in North Idaho.

From May 10 to Oct. 20, restrictions on controlled burns will be in place to mitigate fires potentially getting out of control.

“In Idaho, we close the burn season … because this is typically the time of year when conditions dry out and we need to reduce the chance of an escaped or unwanted fire,” said Idaho Department of Lands Pend Oreille Lake supervisory area fire warden Brian Hicks.

While the closed burning season always lasts from May to October, Hicks said that IDL fire wardens in each county have the authority to extend the season later into the year if they deem that conditions are still too dangerous for open burns.

During this time frame, permits are required for any burns taking place outside city limits, excluding campfires. Permits are free to obtain and take just a few minutes to fill out online, Hicks said.

“Boundary, Bonner, Kootenai, Shoshone and Benewah counties have agreed to shut down large slash piles — piles greater than 10 feet by 10 feet — this spring beginning May 10 due to already dry conditions,” he said.

Burning within the city limits is controlled by the local fire departments, the fire warden added. Burning restrictions within city limits may vary from city to city. Some cities and other jurisdictions — including local or county fire departments, Idaho DEQ, or tribal reservations — may have additional or alternate permit systems in place, so be sure to check before burning.

Free burn permits can be obtained at burnpermits.idaho.gov.

Compliance with air quality regulations is also required at the time of burning. Contact the Department of Environmental Quality online at bit.ly/3V20cSl or by phone at 1-800-633-6247 for up-to-date air quality information.