Saline County still under burn ban
Although parts of Saline County experienced rain last week, it was not enough for a burn ban to be lifted.
Saline is one of the 27 Arkansas counties that remain under a ban.
Saline County Judge Lanny Fite ordered the ban Friday, Sept. 6.
The Arkansas Forestry Commission recommends enacting a burn ban when the drought index reaches more than 600.
A lack of rain and soaring temperatures have brought the county's index above this level.
According to U.S. Geological Survey data, the county has received 0.6 inches of rain during the past 30 days.
Average rainfall for this time of year is 3-4 inches during a 30-day period, according to Brian Smith, climate services program manager of the National Weather Service in Little Rock.
Officials of the Arkansas Forestry Commission say the county is at moderate risk for wildfire.
The ban applies to controlled or other burning, Benton Fire Chief Bill Ford explained.
"The ban will in effect until further notice," Ford said.
The current dry conditions and high temperatures have necessitated the ban on burning, the chief noted.
Officials throughout the state warn that even the smallest spark can start a fire and fires can quickly get out of control.
To view current burn bans and wildfire danger ratings, visit www.arkansasforestry.org.
To report a wildfire, call the Arkansas Forestry Commission Dispatch Center at 1-800-468-8834 or 911.
This is the second burn ban issued in the county this year. The first was issued July 8 and lasted until July 17.