State officials to meet weekly on wildfires, dry conditions
ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - The statewide burn ban is still in place with state and national leaders now meeting every week to determine if the ban will remain in place and evaluate the conditions in Louisiana in the process. The Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) is meeting with various state government agencies to make a decision on IF to remove the burn ban.
LDAF shared on September 13 that the department is meeting with the Government’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP), the National Weather Service, the State Fire Marshal’s Office and the Forestry Commission to make decisions on the burn ban. LDAF Commissioner Mike Strain said some of the things LDAF will provide are the drought index, moisture, rainfall and the relative fire history for areas of Louisiana. Each entity will provide updates in the weekly meetings, discussing whether the burn ban in place can be removed and coming to a collective decision in the process.
“We come together, we make a joint decision on the status of what’s going on as far as burn bans, agriculture burn bans, and all that sort of thing, and discussion about where we’re at, what we have to do to keep everyone safe,” said Strain.
Even with the recent wet and cooler conditions, Strain said that the majority of the state remains in exceptional and extreme drought with consistent rain not seen in most areas, which is why the burn ban is still in place for now.
Strain also mentioned that the burn ban will be lifted as soon as it can and may be lifted in selective areas based on better conditions. He believes that everyone working together in these meetings will keep these wildfires at a minimum to protect homes, property and the community.
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