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As spring wildfire season begins, officials urge caution when burning debris

N.C. Forest Service
A prescribed burn in Johnston County in 2020. Prescribed burns reduce the amount of fuel on the forest floor to prevent catastrophic wildfires, according to the N.C. Forest Service.

The North Carolina Forest Service is asking residents to exercise caution when burning debris. Fires from burning debris continue to be the leading cause of wildfires in North Carolina. According to a news release, peak months for spring fire season run from March through May.

As spring weather draws people outdoors to work in their yards, the forest service says to check local burn laws, make sure you have a valid permit, keep an eye on the weather and be fully prepared before you begin, if you are going to burn debris.

As an alternative to burning, some debris like leaves, grass and stubble can be used as mulch instead. It is illegal to burn anything other than natural vegetation.