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Elevated Fire Danger this Week

For Immediate Release – May 15, 2023

Contact: Dan Dillner
Dan Dillner, State Forest Fire Supervisor 

Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, 802-777-3079

Elevated Fire Danger this Week

State Officials Recommend Increased Awareness When Open Burning due to Dry and Windy Weather

Montpelier, VT – Vermont is currently experiencing high and very high fire danger due to drier than normal weather conditions. The Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation (FPR) is reminding the public to exercise caution and follow all state laws and local ordinances regarding open burning. The National Weather Service has issued Special Weather Statements for elevated fire weather and additional Fire Weather Watches and Red Flag Warnings are anticipated.   

Open burning requires a permit from your town forest fire warden, and Vermonters should always check with their town forest fire warden before burning. When conditions are dry, town fire wardens can institute a burn ban in their respective town. Find your town forest fire warden.

Most areas in Vermont have been 1” below normal rainfall for the last two weeks, with the last measurable rain on May 3. The weather forecast over the next few weeks does not indicate any signs of relief, with little to no precipitation forecasted.

The dry conditions call for extra attention when open burning—particularly with campfires—to reduce the risk of wildland fires. 

FPR issues a daily Fire Danger Forecast for Vermont. Today’s forecast is high or very high. Get the most recent update:

Increased awareness can go a long way to limit the occurrence of wildland fires. Please help prevent wildfires by following these simple guidelines

  • Be aware of the current weather conditions before igniting a fire.
  • Understand open burning laws.
  • Obtain a permit from your Town Forest Fire Warden. 
  • Never leave an open fire unattended. 
  • Never build a campfire on top of duff.
  • Use a camp stove to prevent escaped fires.  
  • Extinguish fires completely before leaving.
    • This can be done by dousing the fire in water, including all embers. Use a live, green branch to mix and stir the embers.  
    • If water is not available, use soil or sand to mix into the embers to cool them down.  
    • Continue to mix water and soil with the embers until the material is cool.  
    • Before leaving, use the back of your hand to check for heat in the campfire.  

Find more Wildland Fire information from FPR online.