High winds prompt several burn bans in Willamette Valley

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Officials warn weather conditions could accelerate fires

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Several fire departments in the Willamette Valley region have issued temporary burn bans in anticipation of dry, windy weather.

As of Wednesday, Canby Fire and the Fire Defense Boards of Clackamas, Marion, Multnomah, Polk, Washington and Yamhill Counties all enacted a ban.

Restrictions include:
• Backyard burning (yard debris, etc.)
• Agricultural burning is strongly discouraged*, contact your local fire agency for special situations
• Land clearing or slash burning

*Multnomah County has banned agricultural burning; Washington County has specifically banned all commercial and agricultural open burning

Officials said if a fire agency is required to respond and be used actively or on a standby basis in for a fire has been started or allowed to spread during the ban, the person responsible may be liable for the costs incurred by the fire agency in controlling, extinguishing or patrolling the fire, as well as legal fees.

The conditions for will be reevaluated on Monday, April 19.

The state’s Department of Forestry reported the number of small wildfires has tripled this spring partly because dry conditions. The agency said it has already doused 70 fires, almost half of which resulted from escaped backyard debris burn piles.

In a normal season, usually 24 fires occur by April 13.

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