County officials approve to establish burn ban as precaution for dry weather
Published: Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, June 19, 2012 01:06
With summer temperatures on the rise, the Walker County Commissioners Court in its meeting last Monday approved to establish a burn ban if it is needed.
While the county is currently not under a burn ban, it may be necessary later this summer.
Burn bans are established to keep people from accidentally staring fires, which are easily started during severe drought conditions.
Sherri Tegoda, administrative assistant to the county judge, said the Commissioner’s Court monitors the county’s drought conditions using the Keetch- Bryam Drought Index, a scale available through the Texas Forest Service.
The scale measures dry conditions around the state, ranging from 0 to 800. Tegoda said a burn ban is usually established when drought conditions reach the early 500s.
However, she added that with the amount of rainfall so far, a burn ban will not be necessary any time soon. According to the KBDI Currently, 82 counties in Texas have established burn bans, most of them in west Texas.
Walker County is between 600 and 700 on the KDBI compared to 722 this time last year.
She warned that although residents should take the proper precautions for dry weather.
"I would tell [residents] to burn old brush and trash ahead of time," she said. "Also, it’s always good to have water readily available just in case a fire does happen."
The next meeting for the Walker County Commissioner’s Court will be held on June 25.