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The Fire Marshal says holiday luminaries pose fire hazard; subject to N.C. burning ban.

December 6, 2007

The Mecklenburg County Fire Marshal and the Charlotte Fire Department remind residents that any open flame, including holiday luminary displays, is subject to the North Carolina burning ban currently in effect.

The Mecklenburg County Fire Marshal and the Charlotte Fire Department remind residents that any open flame, including holiday luminary displays, is subject to the North Carolina burning ban currently in effect.

Luminaries are small lanterns, generally lighted candles placed inside small paper bags lining a walkway or driveway. County Fire Marshal Michael Fox says the luminary displays can be hazardous during dry and windy conditions. He is asking residents and communities to refrain from lighting luminaries, and will enforce the N.C. burning ban accordingly. The Charlotte Fire Department is also discouraging luminary displays inside the City of Charlotte, and will extinguish them in accordance with the burning ban.

The statewide burning ban was issued October 15 by Wib L. Owen, Director of the N.C. Division of Forest Resources, and reads:

"Due to hazardous forest fire conditions and the continuing drought, I am using authority under the law (113-60.25 & 113-60.27) to cancel all burning permits and prohibit all open burning for all 100 counties in North Carolina effective today at 1 p.m.

This does not apply to fires started within 100 feet of an occupied dwelling, if such fires shall be confined within an enclosure from which burning material may not escape or within a protected area upon which a watch is being maintained and which is provided with adequate fire protection equipment, unless the local Fire Marshal has issued a burn ban. Governor Easley has asked that all local municipalities ban outdoor burning."

The statewide burning ban is in effect until lifted by the Director of the N.C. Division of Forest Resources.

The Mecklenburg County Fire Marshal's Office administers and enforces the fire code in unincorporated Mecklenburg County and the towns of Cornelius, Davidson, Huntersville, Matthews, Mint Hill, and Pineville. The Fire Marshal's Office also conducts fire investigations in those jurisdictions. The Charlotte Fire Department conducts those activities inside the City of Charlotte.




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