Minnesota DNR expands list of counties with burn restrictions

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has expanded its list of counties with burning restrictions.

Counties with burning restrictions now include: Anoka, Becker, Beltrami, Benton, Cass, Chisago, Clearwater, Crow Wing, Douglas, Hennepin, Hubbard, Isanti, Kanabec, Kittson, Lake of the Woods, Mahnomen, Marshall, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Otter Tail, Pennington, Pine, Polk, Pope, Ramsey, Red Lake, Roseau, Sherburne, Stearns, Stevens, Todd, Wadena, Washington and Wright counties.

Those listed won’t be issued permits for open burning of brush or yard waste until the restrictions are removed.

“Warm and dry conditions elevate the risk of wildfires, and restricting open burning prevents a burn pile from escaping and becoming a wildfire during times of high risk,” Allissa Reynolds, a DNR wildfire prevention supervisor, said. “These restrictions really do work – they’ve helped reduce wildfires by more than 30% over the past decade.”

Instead of burning yard waste, Reynolds and the DNR encourage composting, chipping or taking brush to a collection site.

The DNR says 90% of Minnesota wildfires are caused by people.

The DNR says burning restrictions will be adjusted as conditions change. The latest updates can be found online.

State officials say if a debris fire rekindles or escapes, whoever set the fire is liable for damages caused, as well as the costs associated with suppressing the wildfire.

CLICK HERE to learn more about wildfires in Minnesota and CLICK HERE for fire danger levels and a map of burning restrictions.