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Burn ban reinstated as dry conditions persist

Lincoln County supervisors issued a burn ban Monday, followingrecommendations by forestry and emergency officials.

The ban took effect immediately and is not set to expire untilNov. 15. It may be lifted once the county receives some rain.

“It’s probably, unfortunately, a necessary evil right now,”Lincoln County Civil Defense Director Clifford Galey said in makinghis recommendation.

The Mississippi Forestry Commission requested the ban.

“Extremely dangerous wildfire conditions due to debris fromHurricane Katrina continue to exist, despite the recent rainfallfrom the passage of weather associated with Hurricane Rita,”EverardBaker, interim state forester, wrote in a letter to supervisors.”These conditions pose a serious threat to life and property of theresidents in the affected counties.”

Baker also wrote that October is traditionally the driest monthof the year and one of the most troublesome in terms of grass andwoodlands fires.

A previous burn ban in Lincoln County expired Oct. 8, althoughofficials continued to urge people to use caution.

Galey said last week that county volunteer fire departments wereresponding to seven to 10 fires a day, mostly in the southern andeastern portions of the county, where damage from Katrina was moresevere.

A majority of the fires, Galey said, were storm-debris firesthat got out of control.