Burn ban in NC: No open fires or campfires, but you can still use personal backyard fire pits. Just ‘be cautious’

Burn ban in NC: No open fires or campfires, but you can still use personal backyard fire pits. Just ‘be cautious’

Smoke from the western wildfires draped Pilot Moutain in this photo from this past summer. But over the past few days, the famous knob has been the scene of its own fire. Photo: Gerry Broome/AP file photo

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Flames wrapped North Carolina’s iconic Pilot Mountain this weekend.

  • Meanwhile, temperatures here are expected to climb into the 70s by Friday, and the first half of December is looking warm and dry, WCNC’s Brad Panovich noted.

Enjoy the weather if you can, of course, but even beautiful days can have downsides.

Driving the news: The North Carolina Forest Service issued a statewide burn ban for all 100 counties, including Mecklenburg.

  • That means no open burning of leaves, branches, trash and more. No bonfires. And if you’re planning to go camping this warm weekend, no campfires. Sorry.
  • But personal fire pits and those Solo stoves all my neighbors have are still good, just as long as they’re at least 10 feet from any structure. Fire officials recommend using screens and other precautions.
  • (Obviously don’t be a lump and dump hot coals.)

What they’re saying: Officials say the Pilot Mountain blaze, which has been contained to the state park, was “human caused in some form,” the Winston-Salem Journal reports.

Details: Pilot Mountain is the one with that big geologic knob near the Virginia line.

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  • People driving south on I-77 from West Virginia and Ohio recognize it as the mountain they see in the distance as they head through Fancy Gap. The knob is a sign that they’ve finally made it to North Carolina (where many will relocate permanently, of course).
  • As of Tuesday afternoon, officials considered the fire about 20% contained, the Journal reported.

The big picture: This week’s warm weather isn’t a one-off. Falls and winters have been getting warmer, according to a report from Climate Central.

Warmer days in fall in Charlotte 2021

Data: Climate Central; Chart: Axios Visuals

Charlotte sees about 3.5 more days above normal each fall than we did in 1970, the report says.

Want to help? Pilot Mountain town officials ask you to give directly to the local fire and emergency departments.

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