Recreational fires allowed in Whatcom County, but no yard burning

While weekend storms wreaked havoc on power lines across Whatcom County, the accompanying rain has been enough to allow recreational fires again.

The county Fire Marshal’s Office modified the burning restrictions effective Monday morning, Aug. 31, for unincorporated areas. Recreational fires up to 3 feet by 3 feet of seasoned firewood or charcoal are allowed.

The burn ban remains in effect for all other outdoor burning. That means no burning yard debris or land-clearing fires.

Lummi Island also lowered its restrictions, allowing recreational fires no larger than 2 feet in diameter and beach fires below the most recent tide line. Details will be updated at lummiislandfire.com.

Other requirements for county recreational fires:

▪ Must have enclosure 16 inches high, made of steel or masonry / rock.

▪ Must be 25 feet from structures, timber or combustible material.

▪ 15 feet of overhead clearance required.

▪ Have a garden hose or two 5-gallon buckets of water at fire.

▪ Hand tools required on site.

▪ Allowed after dark if attended until fire is out cold.

▪ No burning when winds exceed 7 mph.

Violations of these burn restrictions can result in a minimum $250 fine. If you have an illegal fire that escapes or needs to be extinguished by the fire department, you may be held financially responsible for fire suppression costs and may be criminally charged with reckless burning.

For current outdoor burning restrictions in the county call 360-778-5903 or go to www.co.whatcom.wa.us/381/Fire-Marshal.

Related stories from Bellingham Herald