With spring's arrival, Carbon County residents are beginning to clean yards and burn weeds, branches, leaves and ditches.
As the open burn season begins and wildfire dangers become more pronounced, Price Fire Chief Paul Bedont reminds local residents of the ordinances specific to the individual city limits.
"You may have already seen large plumes of smoke outlining your skyline," said Bedont. "We remind all residents that uncontrolled fires can and often do cause damage to property placing neighbors at risk."
Last year, several large wildfires raged across the state as well as the county and, according Bedont, local fire departments annually respond to calls involving brush, grass and even structure fires which began as small agricultural burns that quickly got out of control.
"Most of these fires are caused by individuals who don't take proper precautions to prevent the spread of their fires," said Bedont. "We also remind residents to realize your neighbors may not appreciate their homes being filled with smoke, so take note and only burn when wind conditions are favorable."
State and federal laws strictly regulate what can be burned. Violation of the statutes can result in substantial fines and possible jail sentences.
Bedont reported that most cities have ordinances regulating open burning within their city limits.
But in order to maintain uniformity and comply with state and federal regulations, the county fire chiefs and county fire warden have set the time frame of April 1 through April 30 for open burning in those cities that allow the practice.
Detailed rules governing open burning may be obtained from local fire department offices.
Each city's general outline and contact information include:
Price - With only a few agricultural exceptions, no open burning is allowed within the city limits.
The Price fire department may be reached at 435-636-3187.
Helper - Permits are required and may be obtained from the city's police department Monday through Thursday between 9 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
The three-day permits are free, but must be obtained before any burning should be done.
The Helper fire department can be reached at 435-472-3572.
Wellington - Permits are required and may be obtained by residents 18 years of age or older from Wellington city offices on regular business days between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.,
The one-day permits are free, but must be obtained prior to burning
Wellington city offices may be reached at 637-5213.
East Carbon - Permits are required and may be obtained by residents 18 years of age or older during regular business days between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.
The two-day permits are free, but must be obtained before any burning.
East Carbon City offices may be reached at 435-888-6613.
Sunnyside - Permits are required and may be obtained from the Sunnyside city offices on regular business days between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.
The permits are free, but must be obtained before any burning can be done.
Sunnyside city may be reached at 435-888-4444.
Scofield - Due to the mountainous terrain and proximity to United States Forest Service property, the town's open burn season differs from the rest of the county.
Residents may contact Scofield town offices at 435-448-9221 for more information.
Residents living within the unincorporated portions of Carbon County are not allowed to open burn without a formal permit between June 1 and Oct. 31.
The date is subject to change based upon current and projected fire conditions.
For updated fire conditions, obtaining a permit or questions about open burning within the unincorporated portions of Carbon County, residents may contact Rudy Sandoval at 435-613-3370.
Bedont provided several safety tips Carbon County residents should follow to help preventing a fire from getting out of control.
Residents who plan on conducting an open burn should:
Obtain a permit.
Notify the public safety dispatch center at 435-637-0893 every morning before burning and when finished.
Clear the project site of combustible materials to keep the controlled burn from spreading outside the planned area.
Try to keep brush piles small and limit the size of the fire.
Never leave a fire unattended.
Have a way to extinguish the fire. Shovels, fire extinguishers, hoses are all a good idea when conducting a burn.
Closely monitor the wind conditions and extinguish the fire if burning embers begin to blow toward other combustibles.
Burn only weeds, tree limbs, branches, leaves and grass etc.
Have a way to quickly call for help should the fire get out of control.
Make sure the fire is completely out before leaving the burn area.