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Stage 2 burn ban called for Snohomish County

Due to stagnant weather conditions and elevated air pollution levels, the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency has issued a Stage 2 burn ban for Snohomish County.

During a Stage 2 burn ban:

• No burning is allowed in any wood-burning fireplaces, certified or uncertified wood stoves or fireplace inserts, or pellet stoves, unless this is your only adequate source of heat. Residents should rely instead on their homes' other, cleaner sources of heat, such as furnaces or electric baseboard heaters, until air quality improves, the public health risk diminishes and the ban is cancelled.

• Regulations prohibit the emission of any visible smoke, even if your fireplace, pellet stove or wood stove is your only adequate source of heat.

• All outdoor burning is prohibited, even in areas where outdoor burning is not permanently banned. This includes recreational fires such as bonfires, campfires and the use of fire pits and chimineas. Burning of storm and flood damage debris is also prohibited.

• Natural gas and propane stoves or inserts are still allowed.

Puget Sound Clean Air Agency inspectors will be scrutinizing smoke emitting from chimneys during this Stage 2 burn ban. Inspectors will be out patrolling until the ban is lifted. Burn ban violations are subject to a $1,000 penalty.

The Washington State Department of Health recommends that people who are sensitive to air pollution limit time spent outdoors. Air pollution can trigger asthma attacks, cause difficulty breathing, and make lung and heart problems worse.

This ban is in effect until further notice. Clean Air Agency staff will continue to monitor the situation to determine when the burn ban can be lifted.

Contact the Snohomish County Burn Ban Information line at 425-388-3508 for updated information, or go to www.pscleanair.org/airq/aqi.aspx# for conditions and forecasts.

Answers to frequently asked questions about burn bans can be found at www.pscleanair.org/airq/burnban/faqs.aspx.

For more information on the Snohomish County Fire Marshal's Office, call 425-388-3557.

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