NEWTON FALLS, Ohio (WKBN) – An urgent warning from firefighters: Don’t burn your leaves.
Fire officials are asking people to dispose of the fallen foliage safely. This comes after several fire departments have responded to more than a dozen burning-related emergencies recently.
Newton Falls Joint Fire District Chief James Williamson said they’ve seen an increase in burning complaints and brush fires.
“One small burn ring in one incident caused about an acre and a half of damage,” he said.
Just this afternoon, another fire sparked on Carson Salt Springs Road in Weathersfield, adding to the list of similar calls across the area. Gusty winds, low humidity and dry conditions increase the fire risk.
“Any fire that you have. A small fire can rapidly become a large fire. You never want to burn leaves, especially on a day like today,” said WKBN Storm Team 27 Meteorologist Jim Loboy.
Williamson said when dead foliage ignites it creates a larger problem.
“One burning leaf can travel for hundreds and hundreds of feet igniting other material and then it just compounds the problem,” he said. “The message is, obviously, don’t burn. Use extreme common sense and if they have any questions, contact their local fire department.”
As a reminder, there is an outdoor burn ban in Ohio from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. throughout the entire month of November.