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Wildfire risk prompts burn ban in Anchorage municipality

Fires will be banned throughout the Anchorage municipality beginning Friday morning because of a high wildfire risk.

The ban will cover campfires, burn pits, portable outdoor fireplaces and open fires on the ground, although campfires will be allowed in dedicated fire rings in state parks. Barbecue and enclosed pellet grills are permitted, officials said in an online statement.

The municipality is at an increased risk for fire and the ban will continue until conditions improve. Fines ranging from $150 to $600 can be issued for noncompliance.

Burn permits were suspended statewide at the beginning of May, although the municipality has not issued permits for the last three years, officials said. Burning of yard debris and the use of burn barrels is always prohibited within the municipality, and officials said woody debris should be “disposed of through curbside trash removal, the Solid Waste Service’s transfer site or the landfill or the wood lot.”

Resources for fighting wildfires are expected to be limited this year due to quarantine requirements and travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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