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On the day Kenton Fire Chief Russ Blue warned the public about the dangers of fires and the possible postponement of the Fourth of July fireworks in Kenton because of the ongoing drought, the area got some rain.
Only .20 of an inch was recorded at the Kenton U.S. weather station from Friday afternoon’s storm, but it offered some hope to the parched soil and rain-starved crops. The weather forecast also includes chances for rain on Saturday and Sunday.
Earlier on Friday, Blue, with support of Kenton Mayor Randy Manns, issued an “open burning advisory” for the City of Kenton until further notice. “Residents in the city, along with Buck and Pleasant Townships, are asked to cooperate with this advisory in an effort to keep our communities safe,” the fire chief said.
“We are asking homeowners, farmers, and the public to be especially cautious during this dry period,” Blue said. Residents are urged to take extra measures to prevent accidental fires that include:
• Do not have open cooking, campfires, or other recreational fires.
• Do not discard cigarettes or other smoking materials outdoors.
• Avoid burning of trash and debris.
“The unusually dry conditions warrant such an advisory with respect to all types of outside open burning and fires,” Blue said. “The Ohio Fire Marshal, the National Weather Service and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Forestry have also issued fire watches for northwestern and southwestern Ohio.”
Blue added, “We strongly suggest that the residents of Hardin County attend public displays of fireworks being held within the county. We are monitoring the conditions daily in regards to the 4th of July fireworks display at the fairgrounds. If conditions continue to deteriorate and become extremely dry it may be necessary to postpone until conditions improve.
“We also ask that use of private fireworks, which are limited to trick and novelty devices such as sparklers and smoke producing devices, not be used until the dry conditions are alleviated, he said. “All other types of consumer fireworks are prohibited by Ohio law.”
Blue said, “We are asking for cooperation and understanding from the residents with respect to opening burning and fire safety with the unusually dry conditions present at this time. Please remember that the land or structure you own or inhabit or that of your neighbors could be lost if a fire were to get out of control and you could possibly be held civilly liable for your actions.”