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Fire marshal talks about controlled burn safety measures

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI) - High winds have been causing issues for people looking to burn their trash.

Idaho Falls fire officials say it doesn't take much for a small trash fire to become dangerous.

Especially with the high winds expected over the weekend, said Scott Grimmett, the fire marshal with the Idaho Falls Fire Department.

"Please always look at the weather. The humidity and the wind is a huge issue here. So look at a free weather app, get on a computer, pay attention to the news for a few days before. Keep that burning down to that single-digit wind speeds, and be aware of what direction it's pushing," Grimmett said.

Grimmett also said you need to call into dispatch.

"208-529-1200. Let them know you're going to be doing some open burning. That should occur during the daylight hours, having a responsible party on scene to put it out and manage it. And then a phone call at the end of the day to let us know it's put out before dark," Grimmett said.

Second, make sure you have the necessary tools nearby to control it.

"A few extra hands is helpful, shovels, rakes, water hose, garden hose, fire extinguisher. Something that lets you control the spread and keep it confined to that area," Grimmett said.

If having anything bigger than a recreational fire, you also need to make sure you have a burn permit.

"You can go to the Idaho Falls fire department web page, and there's a burn permit submittal button you can go through, it will lead you right to the application, and you'll work right with one of the fire prevention inspectors, that will look at the criteria, issue the permit and will give the guidelines that will be required for that permit to be issued," Grimmett said.

And there's one more big thing. Never use a flammable liquid.

"We always have a few calls every year for burns where the gas escaped the container really quickly, violently erupt, or blow up in your hand," Grimmett said.

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Rachel Fabbi

Rachel Fabbi is a reporter, anchor and producer for Local News 8 and Eyewitness News 3.


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