OLYMPIA – The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) today announced that effective 12:01 a.m., September 8, Stevens County Fire Districts 1 & 2, Lincoln, and Spokane counties will increase the fire danger rating to ‘very high.’ In Pend Oreille County, the fire danger rating will increase to ‘high’.

DNR reminds everyone that there is a statewide burn ban in effect on all DNR-protected lands. This ban is effective from July 1, 2011, through September 30, 2011. This applies to all forestlands in Washington except for federal lands.

Campgrounds may have additional burn restrictions in place. Always check with your campground host before starting a campfire.

For daily updates on burn restrictions, call 1-800-323-BURN or visit DNR’s webpage showing fire danger and burning restrictions by county: http://fortress.wa.gov/dnr/firedanger/BurnRisk.aspx.

DNR’s wildfire mission

Administered by Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark, DNR is responsible for fighting wildfires on 12.7 million acres of private, state and tribal-owned forestlands in Washington. DNR is the state’s largest on-call fire department. During fire season, this includes more than 700 DNR employees who have other permanent jobs with the agency and about 375 seasonal workers. DNR participates in Washington’s coordinated interagency approach to firefighting. DNR also has wildfire prevention programs that help people create defensible space around their rural homes and communities, and restrict burning when there is higher wildfire risk.