It’s that time of year again when people will be doing their spring cleaning and burning their trash in piles or barrels in their back yard. Unbeknownst to most, people burning trash are breaking the law and having an illegal burn.
Illegal burning can pollute the air and create smoke that is unhealthy to breath. Potential health effects include: lung and eye irritation, headaches, dizziness, asthma attacks, coughing and even death. You must properly dispose of waste such as take to the landfill or a county recycling center. You can be fined for illegal burning.
This is a list of items that are to never be burned:
• Newspaper, cardboard and other paper products
• Plastic and other synthetic materials
• Paints, household and agricultural chemicals
• Tires and other rubber products
• Asphalt shingles and heavy oils
• Lumber and other building materials
• Buildings, mobile homes
Burning similarly applies to piles collected from clearing land. Forestry officials are urging residents to know the law when burning debris from land clearing.
• Burn piles must be at least 1,000 feet from occupied buildings
• Piles must contain only natural vegetative materials
• Fires must be started after 8 a.m., and new material can’t be added after 6 p.m.
• Piles must be 250 feet from roads when the wind is blowing toward them
Burning is allowed when the items being burnt are leaves, branches and yard trimmings is no public pickup is available and you follow the Division of Air Quality guidelines and local ordinances. Do not burn on Code Red or Orange days in areas with air quality forecasts.
For forecasts, call 1-888-784-6224 or visit www.ncair.org. You may need a burning permit from the North Carolina Forest Service, www.ncforestservice.gov. You can pick up a permit at any authorized NCFS permit agent or by contacting the N.C. Forest Service office in Sampson County, at 910-592-4515. For any questions involving outdoor burning laws or illegal burning, contact the North Carolina Division of Air Quality, 1-877-OPEN BURN (1-277-673-6287).
If a fire escapes or becomes uncontrollable contact 911.