Officials urging Hampton County residents not to start fires during drought

Officials urging Hampton County residents not to start fires during drought

HAMPTON COUNTY, S.C. (WTOC) - The South Carolina Forestry Commission reported 212 wildfires in the state for the month of September.

Drought conditions throughout much of the WTOC viewing area are creating an additional hazard for firefighters.

It’s no secret that the Lowcountry hasn’t seen much rain as of late. In fact, more than 2.5 million South Carolina residents are living in drought conditions. The Hampton County Fire Department has seen the dangers of the conditions firsthand, and they’re asking that you don’t start a fire unless you absolutely have to.

“We had one pretty good sized woods fire go, burning a cutover, and it got into the big woods," Hampton County Fire Chief Greg Cook said. "We spent all Sunday afternoon trying to help put that fire out with the help of forestry and the bulldozers. The other one was someone was burning trash outside, walked away and left it, and it got into the woods.”

Any type of burn ban would have to come from the state level, and so far, it hasn’t, but city officials in Hampton are asking citizens to treat it like one, and don’t burn anything outside unless absolutely necessary.

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