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Recent rains cause Polk to lift burn ban | Environment

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Recent rains cause Polk to lift burn ban
Recent rains cause Polk to lift burn ban

Polk County, Florida - Recent rains have reduced the threat of wildfires in Polk County prompting the Fire Chief to repeal Polk's burn ban as of Friday, May 10.

Citizens are now allowed to burn trash, yard debris, campfires, bonfires, and construction debris, though per state law, the use of fireworks remains prohibited.

It is possible a burn ban could be reinstated if there is a severe lack of rain and/or extremely dry conditions develop in Polk between now and the start of the normal summer rainy season.

Curious about what exactly leads officials to issue or lift a burn ban? The county shares some of the science behind the decisons:

At the time the burn ban was issued, Polk County had reached an average of 572 on the Keetch Byram Drought Index (KBDI). The KBDI is used as an indicator to determine the likelihood and severity of brush fires. The scale begins at zero (no danger) and rises to 800 (extreme danger).

As a rule of thumb, fire officials become concerned any time the scale goes above 500 for 50 percent of the county.

For more information about brush fires, fire dangers and how to develop a "firewise" community, visit, www.nfpa.org  or www.firewise.org.   

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