Statewide Fire Alert Issued by Alabama Forestry
The Alabama Forestry Commission over the weekend issued a statewide Fire Alert due to the lengthy dry spell currently underway. This means permits for outdoor burning will be restricted until further notice.
Anyone who burns a field, grassland, or woodland without a burn permit could face a Class B misdemeanor. The commission advises residents to delay outdoor burning until conditions improve, if possible. While under the Fire Alert, all necessary safety precautions should be exercised when doing any type burning. You should always call the Alabama Forestry Commission for a burn permit.
Currently, all of West Alabama is experiencing abnormally dry conditions according to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor Report. The southwestern portion of the state is under extreme drought conditions in some areas. This could lead to a high probability of fuel ignition. Officials warn that the current dry weather can cause fires to spread out of control quickly.
East Central Alabama is the only area of the state not currently considered in dangerous dry conditions; however, AFC notes the region is close.
There is a 50% chance for scattered rain showers today in West Alabama. Lower chances between 20% and 40% will be present through Thursday of this week and the forestry commission is concerned that rainfall amounts will not be enough to break the dry spell before a return to dry conditions by weeks end and through the coming weekend.
Over this past weekend there were 11 active wildfires across the state, two here in West Central Alabama (Northern Bibb and Marengo counties). That has been reduced to four (none in West Alabama) as of this afternoon according to the latest AFC update on their website. The largest current fire is 137 acres north of Union Springs in Bullock County. It is now under control.