Victoria County burn ban remains in effect

Brian Cuaron

May 16, 2011 at 12:16 a.m.

The Victoria County burn ban is still in effect despite some rainfall last week.

Some residents have called the county asking if the ban was still in effect. However, Fire Marshal Ron Pray said that only the Victoria County Commissioners Court can eliminate the burn ban.

He added while the 1.17 inches of rain brought the county's Keetch-Byram Drought Index, which measures soil moisture, down to 530 on Saturday, it was already back to 551 on Monday and projected to be 570 on Tuesday.

"Most of that (rain) water has been sucked in already and now it's gone," Pray said.

He said the index was averaging 650 in Victoria County before the rain.

Pray also said the index for the county will get close to 700 in two weeks unless the county gets significant rainfall.

The commissioners court enacted the burn ban once the index reached 604 on April 25.

Pray said that people outside city limits can still burn household garbage in a burn barrel with a screen on top of it. They can barbecue, too, so long as the fire is in a pit and not on the ground.

Charcoal is the safest fuel to use for barbecuing, Pray said. He warned against people using their barbecue pits for burning foliage.



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