Burn ban runs until end of month

September 2, 2011

By Staff

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Dry conditions and forecasts calling for continued dry weather prompted the King County fire marshal to impose a fire-safety burn ban in unincorporated areas.

The ban started Aug. 8 and runs until Sept. 30.

The latest burn ban is in addition to a state burn ban on forestlands, such as Tiger Mountain State Forest, and a summer burning moratorium in the Eastside Fire & Rescue service area, including Issaquah. (EFR also covers Sammamish, and unincorporated areas such as Klahanie, Mirrormont and Preston.)

The state and EFR bans remain in effect until Sept. 30 as well.

The county burn ban applies to all outdoor burning, except for small recreational fires in established fire pits at approved campgrounds or owner-approved fires on private property.

The use of gas and propane self-contained stoves and barbecues is allowed under the ban.

Under the county ban, fires must be:

  • Built in a metal or concrete fire pit, grow no larger than 3 feet across.
  • Located in a clear spot free from any vegetation for at least 10 feet in a horizontal direction, including a 20-foot vertical clearance from overhanging branches.
  •  Attended at all times by someone with immediate access to a shovel, and either five gallons of water or a connected and charged water hose.

Burning to clear land is permanently banned in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties.

County seeks opinions about parks, trails

King County Parks administrators need opinions from visitors about parks, trails and natural areas — and ideas about how to improve the 26,000-acre system.

The agency plans to conduct in-person surveys at parks and along trails throughout August and September, including Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park between Issaquah and Newcastle.

The schedule for in-person surveys includes a session on Cougar Mountain near Newcastle from 8-10 a.m. Sept. 8. Provide feedback at www.kingcounty.gov/parks.

“We want to hear directly from parks and trails users about their experiences at King County Parks’ facilities so that we can help plan and prioritize for the future,” King County Parks Director Kevin Brown said in a statement. “Measuring customer satisfaction is consistent with King County’s strategic plan and provides us with important feedback.”

The agency is also scheduling workshops to gather input from younger park visitors.

Site Story, a local consultant specializing in community outreach, and cultural and public open space planning, is conducting the survey. The project is funded in part by a grant from the National Center for Civic Innovation.


Five apply for Planning Commission job

Five people have turned in applications for the city of Newcastle’s Planning Commission vacancy.

The commission is an advisory board to the City Council made up of seven members who review and recommend amendments to the city’s Comprehensive Plan, Zoning Code and other city land-use and other documents.

The applications will go to Mayor John Dulcich for review. A candidate is recommended by the mayor and ratified by the City Council for final approval.

Interviews will take place in early September.

The deadline to turn in applications for the vacancy was extended until Aug. 12.

Newcastle, Renton men arrested for BUIs

After more than 550 boats were contacted by officials during Seafair on Aug. 7 on Lake Washington, one boat in particular was in hot water.

In just four hours, two drivers were arrested in separate incidents for boating under the influence, for operating the same boat.

At about 1:30 p.m., the Impaired Operator Emphasis on Lake Washington stopped a boat for a no-go-zone violation. Emphasis patrol officials arrested the operator, Joseph Dalrymple, of Renton, for investigation of BUI.

At 5:40 p.m. that day, the same boat was stopped for a no-wake-zone violation and the operator, Thomas Hutchison, of Newcastle, was arrested for investigation of BUI.

Both operators were booked into the King County Jail.

Of the boats contacted, there were 71 arrests for BUI and three minor in possession charges. The multiagency emphasis included the Mercer Island Police Marine Patrol, Washington Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Seattle Police & Harbor Patrol, King County Sheriff’s Office Marine Patrol, United States Coast Guard and the Washington State Patrol.

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