Some ignoring burn bans - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Some ignoring burn bans

NACOGDOCHES COUNTY, TX (KTRE) -

The outdoor burn ban map tells the story. A record 235 Texas counties have outdoor burn bans. Still, burn ban violators are turned in. It happened to Glynn Layton.

"And I came home that Saturday evening and set a fire," Layton said. "About the time I got back in the house the law was out here. Somebody turned me in."

Constables and sheriff's deputies respond to burn ban complaints quickly.

"They probably here in five minutes, you know," Layton said. "Real quick, so I wouldn't advise it for nobody. Make absolutely sure the fire ban is gone before you start a fire."

Authorities know from experience that an out of control fire can destroy acres in a matter of minutes. That's why more citations are handed out than warnings.

"Especially with them knowing how dry it is and lack of rain we've had and windy conditions," Deputy Constable Shawn Murray said. "They should not be burning right now being under a burn ban."

Only 19 Texas counties are not under burn restrictions. Most of them are in Northeast Texas. Everyone else is acting on the side of caution.

"It's really dry and we're asking the folks not to burn and not to shoot any fireworks off," Justice of the Peace Kerry Don Williamson said. "There's also a ban against those."

A burn ban violator can receive a fine up to $500. Layton's was $300.

"And I paid the fine and we all happy now," Layton said.

Copyright 2011 KTRE. All rights reserved.

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