ALEXANDRIA, Ky. -- If you live in Campbell County, hold off on hosting a neighborhood bonfire.
A Campbell County judge issued an executive order Wednesday that prohibits "all outdoor burning" until further notice. Fire chiefs from across the county consulted officials before the executive order was filed.
A lack of adequate rainfall is "a contributing factor in the fire danger," according to a press release from William Turner, director of emergency management for the county.
Residents cannot burn trash, grass, leaves, crops or light campfires or bonfires, Turner said.
There are a few exceptions:
- Fires lit in a grill "for the purpose of food preparation"
- Bonfires no more than 5 x 5 feet conducted by organized and recognized groups with local fire departments notified
Anyone found in violation can face fines or civil action, Turner said.
Campbell County isn't alone in this outdoor fires ban. Starting campfires, lighting fireworks and smoking cigarettes are among the outdoor activities being banned across the South as fires burn in forests stressed by drought, according to the Associated Press.
U.S. Forest Service spokesman Adam Rondeau has said the agency is tracking wildfires that have burned a total of 80,000 acres across the South, including a north Georgia fire that's burned an area the size of Manhattan.
Open flames are banned until further notice on public lands across Tennessee and in parts of Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina and Virginia.