Burn Ban list continues to grow in Kentucky

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – It’s been 22 days with no rain and there’s a chance we won’t be seeing any soon.

That’s created dangerous fire conditions and put nearly half of the state under a burn ban.

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Fayette County and Woodford County joined the growing list on Thursday.

The KY Division of Forestry’s fire management chief says it’s not normal for September to be this dry or for this many counties to be under a burn ban.

On average, the fire management chief  says the driest and busiest month for fires is October.

“Once the leaves start to come off the trees, more sunlight gets to the forest floor, the humidity’s going to start dropping as we get further into fall and that’s when we really get into a bad situation,” said Brandon Howard, Fire Management Chief.

Howard said the last time it was extremely dry was in 2016.

During that year, the Division of Forestry responded to over a thousand wild fires that burned more than 71,000 acres. There was over 800 fires in 2017 and 360 fires in 2018.

There’s been more than 400 fires so far this year.

Under a burn ban, you’re not allowed to set any fire outside until the ban expires. That includes cooking over a campfire and construction debris fires.

Howard says if you don’t take burn bans seriously it could cost you.

“If they do let a fire escape and it happens quite often when we respond they will be responsible for suppression costs,” said Howard.

For a list of the counties in a burn ban, click here.

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Alexus Larson joined the ABC36 news team as a multi-media journalist in December 2018. She is from a suburb outside of the Twin Cities in Minnesota and most recently comes from Minot, North Dakota where she reported and graduated from Minot State University with a degree in broadcasting. Alexus and her husband are excited to be in Lexington and out of the cold! When she’s not reporting, she loves to explore new places, be with friends and family, and watch or attend sports – especially if it’s a Minnesota team! You can see Alexus reporting during the week and the weekends. If you have any story ideas, you can contact her by email alarson@wtvq.com, or you can find her on Facebook at Alexus Larson ABC36, or on Twitter at @AlexusLarsonTV. She looks forwarding to hearing from you!