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County firefighters deal with a number of woods and brush fires over the weekend


Lexington, SC (Paul Kirby) – Lexington County firefighters dealt with a number of brush fires over the weekend as windy, dry conditions stayed with us most of Saturday andSunday. In several cases, sheds and other structures were damaged as well as some vehicles.

On Saturday, several fires also burned the woods and grass as firefighters dealt with windy conditions. Several in the Gaston and Swansea areas required multiple resources from various stations.

Around 2 p.m. on Sunday afternoon, firefighters found what the first due chief described as several tractor trailer trucks and the woods on fire near the intersection of Augusta Hwy. and Calks Ferry Rd. west of Lexington High School.

On this call, the battalion chief who was managing the scene requested several tanker trucks respond to support the firefighters already arriving with their pumper and special brush trucks. They quickly brought that fire under control after eventually finding the closest access to it from the road.

On Fallow Rd. one fire spread to a shed before firefighters could arrive on the scene. It took several stations to halt the spread of this wind - pushed fire. Another, closer to Sandy Run, burned off Basil Rd. before firefighters could arrive and stop its advance.

There were several more across the county that required the attention and resources of the fire service. In several cases, the fires were as a direct result of careless and illegal outdoor burning.

Lexington County has an outdoor burning ordinance that prohibits the open burning of leaves, tree branches, and yard trimmings at private residences within 75 feet of any structure and/or the property line. Citizens who burn debris outdoors must take adequate steps to prevent any fire from spreading within 75 feet of any structure.

Open burning that is done for the purpose of clearing land or maintaining a right-of-way must be conducted in compliance with South Carolina air quality regulations. Such open burning is prohibited between April 1 and October 30, when air quality problems are most prevalent in Lexington County.

State law prohibits the burning of household garbage and trash, paper, motor and waste heating oils, asphaltic materials like shingles or rolled roofing, tires and other rubber products, building materials, plastics, paints, household chemicals, agricultural chemicals, electric wire, or any material with metal content.

You can find out more about burning in Lexington County by calling 803-785-8141. You can also get more information on open burning by going to http://www.scdhec.gov/environment/baq/openburning.aspx.

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