Fireworks Safety / Burn Ban

BJ Stiefvater


Fireworks Safety / Burn Ban

Fireworks Safety / Burn Ban
Fireworks are popular in South Dakota, and even more people may want to use them this year as the holiday coincides with the COVID-19 pandemic waning in the state. The stakes are high because a small spark could start a wildfire that could burn many acres. This year in McCook County we are experiencing unduly hazardous fire conditions due to very dry conditions from the lack of rain. McCook County is dedicated in taking steps to protect the health and safety of all residents of the County and all property within the County. As of June 22nd 2021 McCook County is under a Burn Ban.
This Burn ban means that there is no open burning, “open burning” is defined as any outdoor fire, including but not limited to campfires, warning fires, charcoal grill fires, or the prescribed burning of fence rows, fields, wildlands, trash, and debris. This resolution excludes fires contained within liquid-fueled or gas fueled stoves, fireplaces within all buildings, charcoal grill fires at private residences and permanent fire pits or fire grates located on supervised developed picnic grounds and campgrounds.
This does not mean residents cannot enjoy fireworks this year or a campfire that is properly contained. But please take extra precautions, be vigilant and prepared. Be aware of your location, your surroundings, and wind direction while using fireworks and have a plan if something should happen.

Here are some key tips to Fireworks Safety
• Never allow young children to handle fireworks.
• Older children should use them only under close adult supervision.
• Never use fireworks while impaired by drugs or alcohol.
• Anyone using fireworks or standing nearby should wear protective eyewear.
• Never hold lighted fireworks in your hands
• Never light them indoors
• Only use them away from people, houses, and flammable material
• Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
• Only light one device at a time and maintain a safe distance after lighting.
• Never ignite devices in a container
• Do not try to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks.
• Soak both spent and unused fireworks in water for a few hours before discarding.
• Keep a bucket of water nearby to fully extinguish fireworks that do not go off or in case of fire.
• Never use illegal fireworks

The ban will be in place until fire conditions improve as determined by Emergency personnel within McCook County. Penalty for not adhering to the ban is, fine not to exceed five hundred dollars for each violation, or imprisonment for a period not to exceed thirty days for each violation, or both the fine and imprisonment, if found in violation of this Resolution, as per South Dakota Codified Law 7-18A-2, and that the costs for suppressing any fire, including response fees, mutual aid assistance from other agencies or fire departments, reimbursement to governments for suppression efforts and compensation to the firefighters for time from their employment, be borne by the individual or individuals responsible for setting the fire.

Be Prepared, Be Present, and Be safe!

BJ Stiefvater
McCook County Emergency Manager
McCook County EMS Inc.
Office: 605-425-2085
Cell: 605-421-8392
Fax: 605-425-2555