Grass­fires hit Queens County

The Queens County Advance - - NEWS - By Aethne Hinch­liffe

There have been about five grass­fires in Queens County in the past month.

The most re­cent fire was in Brook­lyn on April 1. David Payzant, deputy chief of the Liver­pool Vol­un­teer Fire Depart­ment, says it started from an out­side fire­place.

“They’ve var­ied in size. Noth­ing ma­jor, I would say,” says Payzant about the re­cent fires.

He says none of the fires have been sig­nif­i­cant, and none has done struc­tural dam­age.

Payzant says this year’s grass­fires be­gan early, and might have some­thing to do with the lack of snow.

“We wish we could an­swer that,” says Payzant when asked why peo­ple light grass­fires.

“A lot of the peo­ple do it be­cause they’re try­ing to clear land.”

Some peo­ple burn grass be­cause they be­lieve their grass will grow back greener and stronger, adds Payzant. But ac­cord­ing to the deputy chief, some fires are also be­cause of inat­ten­tive­ness.

Payzant sug­gests peo­ple should be more aware of their sur­round­ings and of the weather on days they de­cide to burn.

Peo­ple in An­napo­lis, Digby, Kings, Lunen­burg, Queens, Shel­burne and Yar­mouth coun­ties must have pro­vin­cial per­mits to burn brush be­gin­ning on April 1. Peo­ple in the rest of the prov­ince have to have per­mits by April 15.

Ac­cord­ing to a Nat­u­ral Re­sources press re­lease, do­mes­tic burn­ing per­mits for yard clean up are valid for two weeks and cost $5.71. In­dus­trial burn­ing per­mits for land clear­ing, agri­cul­tural clear­ing and blue­berry fields are valid for as long as the job takes and are $57.16.

“The big thing we al­ways say is you shouldn’t burn within 300 me­tres of a forested or a wooded area. Be aware of your weather, es­pe­cially your wind,” says Payzant.

Payzant stresses the fact peo­ple should be care­ful if they choose to burn.

Aethne Hinch­liffe photo

Fire­fight­ers with the Liver­pool Vol­un­teer Fire Depart­ment put out a grass­fire in Mil­ton on a mild, windy day in late March.

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