Red-flag fire alerts for Beaufort and other coastal counties were lifted by the S.C. Forestry Commission on Tuesday.
The ban also was lifted in the Pee Dee and other Lowcountry regions, the commission said in a news release. At this time, no portion of South Carolina is under a red flag alert.
Improving weather conditions -- including rain in Beaufort and Jasper counties -- and increasing humidity prompted the agency to lift the alert that was issued Friday when dry, cool air and high winds swept through much of the state. The Forestry Commission responded to about 121 wildfire calls statewide through the alert period, the release said.
Under an ordinance passed in September, open outdoor burning is prohibited in unincorporated Beaufort County when the commission issues a red-flag alert to warn of increased potential for wildfires. Previously, if conditions became dry and dangerous for wildfire -- as they did this past summer -- state fire officials could suggest residents in unincorporated areas refrain from burning, but they couldn't bar the practice.
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Although fire weather conditions are improving, South Carolina is in the middle of its annual late winter/early spring fire season, and long-term drought conditions persist statewide, the Forestry Commission news release said. As such, it still urges residents to postpone outdoor burning.
For more information on fire safety, wildfire statistics, the commission's dispatch center operations and tips for responsible outdoor burning, go to www.trees.sc.gov.