St. Martin Parish, (KPEL News) - The Louisiana State Fire Marshal is pleading with residents not to burn anything in open areas outdoors while windy, dry conditions continue in the state. Unattended fires are stretching fire departments from Texas to parishes in south Louisiana. The Fire Marshal says:

While the state is NOT under a burn ban, State Fire Marshal Bryan J Adams is strongly encouraging Louisianans to avoid any outdoor burning practices this week until conditions become less concerning.

Continuous, elevated winds coupled with mostly dry conditions across the state have sparked brush fire calls that required the assistance of local fire departments. Several of these calls have escalated into large and dangerous wildfires that involved response from the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry. Such was the case near DeRidder north of Lake Charles, an area that had fire crews busy for weeks over the summer of 2023 during the drought.

Facebook via St. Martin Parish Fire District

Texas is dealing with its own fire issues, as the state's largest wildfire in history is burning across the panhandle. Texas Governor Greg Abbott has declared an emergency in at least 60 counties. As of Wednesday morning, nearly 800 square miles have burned. It's five times larger than it was when it started Monday.

scorched earth fire
Facebook via St. Martin Parish Fire District

St. Martin Parish fire officials responded to nearly two dozen unattended fires over the weekend that got out of control, threatening neighboring property. Fire departments from all across St. Martin Parish dealt with 23 incidents. In a Facebook post, the St. Martin Parish Fire District thanked the following crews and volunteers for assisting:

Louisiana Fire Marshal Bryan J. Adams issued recommendations to residents who are unable to avoid open burning:

  • Ensuring weather conditions, including wind speed and direction, are safe for burning
  • Confirming open burning is legal in your area
  • Establishing a burn pile at least 75 feet from any structures
  • Creating a 5-foot wet control line around the area
  • Avoiding the use of flammable liquids to ignite a burn pile
  • Remaining vigilant over the fire with a water source nearby at all times
  • Alert a loved one or neighbor of your activities or conduct them with help
  • If the fire does get out of control, call 911

Louisiana, Here Are Tips on Prevent Fires and Tragedy in Our Homes

Here are the things people in Louisiana can do to prevent fires and tragedy in our homes this year.

Gallery Credit: BernadetteLee

8 Ways to Clear & Keep Wildfire Smoke from Your Home

Gallery Credit: AJ Brewster