FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 19, 2008
SC FORESTRY COMMISSION URGES SAFER AG BURNS DUE TO DROUGHT
(Columbia,SC)–South Carolina Forestry Commission personnel have observed a number of wildfires originating during seasonal wheat field burn-offs. SCFC recognizes the importance of this practice and the benefits it provides as a land management tool. Current drought conditions however can turn a normally benign agricultural burn into a powerful wildfire with just a slight shift in the wind and/or inadequate burn site preparations. Here are a few tips from SCFC foresters for keeping wheat field burns under control:
- Notify SCFC of your planned burn. Each county has its own 1-800 number to call for making this notification which is required by state law.
- Meet SCFC Smoke Management Guidelines. They can be found at www.trees.sc.gov
- Prior to burning, create a firebreak around the wheat field with a strip at least 8 to 12 feet wide and disked multiple times to ensure mineral soil is completely exposed.
- The SCFC recommends to burn mid to late morning when winds generally are lower and relative humilities are higher.
- Do not burn wheat fields on days with high winds.
- Stay with your fire until it is out and safe to leave.
The SC Forestry Commission’s mission is to protect and develop South Carolina’s forest resource. For every $1.00 invested by SC in the Commission, the industry produces about $1,000.00 of economic impact.
For more information, contact Scott Hawkins, 803-896-8820