Valley Journal
Valley Journal

Review debris burning checklist

News from CSKT Division of Fire

Pre-burn checklist: Have you considered other alternatives to burning? Have you obtained your burn permit (required, May 1-June 30)? Have you checked the weather forecast (forecasted winds)? Have you checked to see if it is a “Burn or No Burn Day” by calling Air Quality at 1-800-225-6779? 

Before You Light: Have you scouted the area you are going to burn? Do you have control lines between your land and adjacent lands? Have you cleared weeds and grass around telephone poles, utility boxes, gas meters, propane tanks, cottonwood trees, corrals or sheds? Have you created fire breaks to keep your fire from spreading beyond the intended burn area or piles? Do you have adequate equipment, tools, water and personnel on site to keep your fire from escaping?

While You’re Burning: Keep your fires small - avoid burning large areas at one time. Always burn against the wind and be cautious of wind shifts. If winds increase, consider extinguishing your fire. Monitor you fire at all times.

After the Burn: Walk the fire perimeter and check for any smoldering piles or debris that could reignite if winds increase. Spread any hotspots around with a rake or other tool. If water is available, use it to cool hotspots. Pile burns should be monitored for a few days after your burn.

Stay on site until your fire is out. The number one cause of wildfires on the Flathead Indian Reservation is careless debris burning. Burning on windy days, when it is too hot and dry or leaving their burns unattended are the most common reasons. Don’t let your fire escape.

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