Ottawa County Commissioners agreed Monday to let the county's current fire ban expire Oct. 6.
Frank Geasland, Ottawa County Emergency Management director, told the commissioners that seven of the county's nine fire chiefs were asking for the fire ban to be lifted.
The fire chiefs in Wyandotte and Peoria both asked that the county's fire ban be retained and extended, he said.
Commission Chairman John Clarke said that is the part of the county with the most woods, so it makes sense they would want it retained.
Geasland said if the weather continues to be dry and windy the commissioners can impose another fire ban.
The commissioners also agreed to put a fire ban resolution on each agenda so, if needed, they can adopt one on an emergency basis so it goes into effect immediately.
Monday, Gov. Mary Fallin also amended the burn ban in central Oklahoma
Due to recent rainfall across Oklahoma, Governor Mary Fallin Monday amended the burn ban in central Oklahoma as of 1 p.m. today to cover 28 counties: Atoka, Beaver, Beckham, Bryan, Carter, Choctaw, Cimarron, Coal, Comanche, Cotton, Garvin, Greer, Harmon, Jackson, Jefferson, Johnston, Kiowa, Love, Marshall, McCurtain, Murray, Pontotoc, Pushmataha, Roger Mills, Stephens, Texas, Tillman, and Washita.
Earlier in the month she lifted the burn ban for most of northeastern Oklahoma, including Ottawa County.
She said statewide, most county commissioners meet Monday and have a chance to assess local conditions and consider their own countywide burn bans at that time.
"The drought continues to persist across Oklahoma, but the recent light rains have given some counties a temporary reprieve from extreme fire conditions," Fallin said. "Individual counties can utilize more localized data, conditions and fire occurrence to decide if burn bans are called for on a county level."
The 28 counties that remain under the Governor's Burn Ban still have very high fire danger due to the wildland fuel conditions and fire behavior. Citizens in counties outside the Governor's Burn Ban should check with local officials or visit www.forestry.ok.gov/burn-ban-information to see if a county burn ban has been enacted.
Unlawful activities under the ban include campfires, bonfires, fireworks and setting fire to trash, grass, woods or other materials outdoors. Gas and charcoal grilling is allowed provided that it is over a nonflammable surface and at least five feet from flammable vegetation.
"Oklahomans should remain very cautious with any outdoor burning. Oklahoma typically experiences our fire season during the winter months when vegetation is brown, but our situation this summer has put us in fire season early and there is no real relief in sight," State Forester George Geissler said. "We are just hopeful that we will get some precipitation this winter to allow spring green up which often signals the end of fire season."
There are exemptions to the Governor's Burn Ban for a number of items such as welding and road construction. For more information, visit www.forestry.ok.gov or call Michelle Finch-Walker at Oklahoma Forestry Services at (580) 236-1021.