City of Hudson gets reprieve as burn ban is lifted for one week

It's a start, but yesterday's rain storms are not enough to lift burn bans.

Right now burn bans remain in place for most of East Texas except for Anderson County.

That's not to say some areas aren't seriously considering lifting the bans, at least temporarily.

Just today, the city of Hudson lifted its burn ban for seven days.

During last night's storms, Margaret Crisp peered out her window to watch her rain gauge.

"Got my flashlight and I can shine it right on there," Crisp said.
This morning's check was even better. 

"Just a fraction, not even, you might say, 2 1/2 inches of rain," Crisp continued.

That's enough to keep the 82-year-old gardener's beautiful dogwood alive, but is it enough to lift the burn bans?

"It's too dangerous. It's just not that important. You can wait," said Crisp.

Some rural residents are tired of waiting as brush and debris continue to pile up.

"I have some of my own I need to do on my place," said Elton Milstead, Nacogdoches Co. Commissioner Pct. 4.

Milstead is among those who would like to see the burn ban lifted eventually.

"We got a lot of trees that died from the drought. We've had a lot of limbs falling and those need to be cleaned up. They need to be burned out of the way because that just provides fuel for wildfires," he said.

There is more moisture on the ground and in the air, but we're also contending with this wind. There are a lot of factors that come into play when deciding when to lift a burn ban.

The consequences are too serious to lift a burn ban too quickly.

"The greatest fear I have that we lift the ban and then someone loses a home or God forbid, lose a life over it," said Milstead.
Counties rely on the scientific data collected by the Texas Forest Service to make up their minds on burn bans. Price prefers common sense and turn to the expert if you lack that.  

"You got a television. Listen to what they're saying for heaven's sake," said Crisp.

Drought indexes and fire threat numbers remain at the moderate level.

Many counties are meeting every single week to take up the burn ban issue.

Nacogdoches County will meet again on Tuesday, unless a special meeting is called sooner.

Copyright 2011 KTRE. All Rights Reserved.