Erath County under burn ban

Staff Writer
Stephenville Empire-Tribune
Erath County Judge Alfonso Campos

Erath County Judge Alfonso Campos issued a burn ban dated July 15 for Erath County because of the current dry conditions.

Violation of the ordinance restricting any outdoor burning is a Class C misdemeanor, punishable by a fine not to exceed $500.

A burn ban issued by the county judge can stay in place up to seven days, or until a vote by the Commissioners Court.

Campos said that the commissioners will vote during their 9 a.m. meeting this coming Monday on whether to continue the burn ban.

The judge’s decision was based on discussions with Erath County Fire Marshal Tommy Shelton, the four commissioners, along with other officials. The standard Keetch-Byram Drought Index readings are used to help officials know when burn bans are necessary to help reduce the risk of wildfires.

“It’s consistent among the counties, so we know when the count is going to be high,” Campos said. “We’ve been hearing about fires (in nearby counties), so I thknk we did that just in time. West of here, and in the Panhandle, fires have been breaking out a lot.”