Due to the drought conditions in the Town of Plattekill, Supervisor Jennifer Salemo has declared a state of emergency that bans the burning of any materials outdoors.
Salemo issued the decree on Aug. 25, stating that it will remain in effect until “sufficient rainfall has been received, making it safe to have open burning again.”
She said the state of emergency was declared “due to drought conditions, which has increased the risk of wildfires.”
Actions prohibited include burning any combustible material in an outdoor area.
“A person violates this order if he/she engages in any outdoor activity which could allow flames or sparks that could result in a fire,” Salemo said.
All outdoor burning of yard trash, household paper products, bonfires, campfires, warming fires, outdoor fireplaces, chimneys and cooking fires is prohibited.
The only exception to this is if the burning was authorized by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) or if the cooking of food is done exclusively within a contained gas or charcoal grill.
The setting of fires to any grass, brush or forest covered land, unless approved by the NYSDEC, shall constitute a violation of the law.
Salemo said if there was notification of suspected outdoor burning, local volunteer fire companies shall respond to the scene to take immediate action to contain and/or extinguish the fire.
Furthermore, Salemo said the Town of Plattekill Police Department or other law enforcement agencies will respond to the scene to investigate the nature of the fire. The law enforcement officials will request immediate compliance with the order.
The order does not apply to firefighting training or burn operations approved by the NYSDEC.
The state of emergency will be lifted when conditions are deemed safe by the Town Board and the NYSDEC, Salemo said.