Burn ban affects half the state

“Even if your area isn’t under a burn ban, pay attention to the instructions of all fire department and law enforcement personnel,” says Indiana State Fire Marshal Jim Greeson. “Field fires and other types of wildfires are extremely dangerous. Public safety personnel are doing their best to keep everyone safe. Hoosiers can do their part by being ready and willing to evacuate quickly if necessary.”

The Indiana State Fire Marshal’s Office is a division of the Indiana Department of Homeland Security.

Continuing dry, hot weather is exacerbating the risk for wildfires across the state, and numerous brush and field fires have already necessitated the temporary evacuation of some residents across southern and central portions of Indiana.

Tips for preparing to evacuate

* Follow all instructions of local authorities.  If you are asked to evacuate by local fire department, law enforcement or other public safety personnel, be prepared to do so quickly.

* Have a bag with essential items packed and ready to go in case you need to evacuate your home quickly. For more information on what items to include, go to www.in.gov/dhs/getprepared.

* Know where you will go if you must evacuate your home, especially in case you need to remain away from your home overnight.

“In these dry conditions fires can ignite and spread very quickly,” said Greeson. “Know what burn ban restrictions affect your area, but always use caution when handling anything that produces heat or could produce a spark.”

Burn bans can be ordered by any local fire chief for his or her jurisdiction, or by the legislative body of a city, town or county. While the Indiana State Fire Marshal’s Office does not declare burn bans, the Indiana State Fire Marshal supports all local efforts to reduce the fire risk escalated by continuing dry weather.

The Indiana State Fire Marshal’s Office has compiled a map to indicate what areas are currently under burn bans.  This map is available at www.in.gov/dhs /files/burn-ban/.

It is imperative that individuals in a burn ban area check with their local fire department or governing body to receive detailed instructions on what burning related activities are prohibited in their area.

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