Counties ban outdoor fires

High winds and a lack of snow cover have prompted officials in three counties to ban all outdoor fires until further notice.

High winds and a lack of snow cover have prompted officials in three counties to ban all outdoor fires until further notice.

Red Deer County upgraded its fire advisory to a ban at about 3 p.m. on Tuesday and fires are also banned in Lacombe and Ponoka counties.

Dave Laurin, district fire chief for Red Deer County, said volunteers from his department have been called to help out at a grass and bale fire near Bowden and were still on the scene at 4 p.m. on Tuesday.

Laurin said it’s unusual to have a fire ban this late in the year.

However, there is no snow cover and vegetation is dormant and therefore very dry. Coupled with very high winds, a small fire could spread very quickly.

WInds at Red Deer Regional Airport were gusting to 65 km/h Tuesday afternoon.

Up-to-date information about local fire bans is available online at www.albertafirebans.ca

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