Lowndes code enforcers watch for illegal burning

Lowndes code enforcers watch for illegal burning
Paige Dukes (Source: WALB)
Paige Dukes (Source: WALB)
Illegal burning (Source: WALB)
Illegal burning (Source: WALB)

VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) - Lowndes County Public Information folks are urging citizens to obey the law, especially when it comes to burning.

"It only takes a spark," said Paige Dukes, Lowndes County Public Information. That's all it takes for a fire to get out of control.

"We want to make sure that everyone here in Lowndes County is being responsible with their burning," said Dukes.

Since January, there have been dozens of cases of illegal burning in Lowndes County, so county leaders are urging community members to be smart when it comes to burning.

Make sure you have a burn permit, and know what days you can burn. In Lowndes County, you can only burn on the first and third Saturdays each month, even with a permit.

Finally, know what you can and cannot burn.

"Burning is only allowed for yard waste. It is illegal to burn trash, period," Dukes.

Most importantly, code enforcers want the community to be safe and smart when starting a fire.

"Be smart and make sure that you've raked out around that so, that if a fire were to get out from the area that you planned for it to be in it's just going to burn to that dirt. It's not going to catch your entire yard on fire," Dukes said.

Dukes says the West Mims Wild Fire is an example of just how quickly a fire can spread.

"We're just in the perfect storm right now as far as fire weather goes."

She urges the community to be smart and prepared whenever they strike a match in their yards.

"It's important that you're setting fires in the right area, that you're doing them at the right time, and no fire should ever be left unattended," said Dukes.

The fine for illegal burning could be up to one thousand dollars, or 30 days in jail.

If an illegal burn gets out of control, violators could also be asked to cover the costs of resources deployed to help put out the fire.

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