The Herald Banner, Greenville, TX

July 4, 2013

Care urged in use of fireworks

By BRAD KELLAR
Herald-Banner Staff

GREENVILLE — Area fire departments have been responding to multiple calls on a daily basis, as Hunt County continues to experience drought conditions.

There is no ban on outdoor burning, but fire officials are urging the public to use caution when planning any outdoor burning during the long holiday weekend ahead, and also to be aware of the rules regarding the use of fireworks in the county.

The use of fireworks is illegal inside the City of Greenville, as well as inside all of the incorporated cities within Hunt County. However, their use is permitted in the unincorporated areas.

As of Wednesday, the Texas A&M Forest Service listed Hunt County under a moderate danger of grass and wild fires. There are restrictions to outdoor burning. The burning of household trash is only permissible during daylight hours and the wind speed cannot be greater then 23 mph. Natural materials, such as brush and limbs can be burned, but not treated or painted lumber. No prohibited material — including but not limited to rubber, plastics, wire, insulation and furniture — can be burned, and a responsible person must be present during active burning.

Local and state fire officials are urging caution in the use of fireworks.

The Texas A&M Forest Service recommends the following precautions for safe fireworks use:

— Check for and obey any burn bans and fireworks use restrictions.

— When and where outdoor burning is allowed, create a firebreak (down to bare dirt) around any outdoor fire before igniting the materials to be burned.

— Keep tools and water nearby just in case a fire starts. It doesn’t take much of a spark or burning ember to ignite dry, fine-textured fuels like grasses and weeds.

— Read and follow label instructions on how to properly discharge fireworks.

— Only use fireworks with close adult supervision.

— Use fireworks only in areas clear of dead, dry grass and weeds.

— Avoid using fireworks, particularly aerial varieties, around buildings. Winds can carry hot fireworks onto roofs where leaves or other flammable debris may have accumulated.