Burn ban issued for parts of Pike County - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Burn ban issued for parts of Pike County

Field burned outside of Nebo, IL Field burned outside of Nebo, IL

It doesn't usually happen in the winter, but part of the Tri-States is under a burn ban. 

This is all happening in southern Pike County.  The Pleasant Hill and Spring Creek Fire Protection Districts have issued a burn ban. The ban comes after firefighters in Pike County say over 1,000 acres of land were scorched in the last two days.

In Nebo, Illinois, about 60 acres burned in a field. It's just one example of what can happen when a field fire gets out of control.

"In some of the ravines and hollers that we were in, it would spread through the timber and get over to another pasture and take off on us," Spring Creek Assistant Chief Josh Martin said.

In the last two days, the Spring Creek and Pleasant Hill Fire departments responded to 9 fires, spanning over 1,000 acres. Now, an unusual burn ban for these fire protection districts.

"The burn ban primarily means any burning is prohibited in an open area," Martin said. "I don't ever remember there being one in February."

Firefighters said there's a danger for fires to spread and take out homes and barn, but it's added danger to firefighter. 

"These guys are having to climb up and down the river bluffs and doing this by hand so it puts a strain on the personnel and the resources there, so it creates a danger for that too," Martin said.
Local farmers said when the weather warms up, fire is used as a natural fertilizer for grass to grow back greener.

"There are guys that will burn fence rows and thing like that and it'll get away from the," Farmer Fred Sahn.

But with the mild winter, higher temperatures and high winds, it's a perfect storm for a field fire.

"The conditions are not favorable to burn. Sometimes, it catches them off guard and they may think that it's okay."

"I didn't think it was that dry, but evidently it is," Sahn said.

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