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Burn ban lifted

"Whidbey Island isn’t exactly wet as a bad dog in the pouring rain, but it isn’t as dry as it was earlier this summer when the entire island was under a burn ban.But because of the recent wetter weather, the Island County Sheriff’s Department lifted the burn ban Sept. 6 and the Oak Harbor Fire Department followed suit.But there still are restrictions on outdoor burns.In the county, burning permits are required on fires if the burn pile is over four feet in diameter. Under state law, only natural materials can be burned and fires in burn barrels are not allowed.Fires must be built on bare soil away from dry grass or foliage, and must not be within 50 feet of any structure. A water hose — or another method of extinguishing a fire — and a person in attendance of the fire must be present at all times while the fire is burning. Only one pile may be burned at a time. You must extinguish all fires when winds are in excess of 7 mph. As a courtesy, the Sheriff’s Departments asks residents to notify the local fire district before burning.Burning permits are available from the state Department of Natural Resources. Call (360) 856-3500 or (800) 527-3305. For a 24-hour informational recording about burning permits for North or Central Whidbey, call 679-7343. "

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