Red Flag Warning today, advice from McPherson Fire Chief

By McPherson Fire Chief Jeff Deal
April 09, 2014

Spring is wildfire season in Kansas and dry conditions have made fires more likely. McPherson and surrounding counties are under a red flag warning put out by the National Weather Service to warn against open burning. It suggests that conditions are favorable for wild land and grass fires.

In Kansas, during a red flag warning period, it is prohibited to burn. Fines can range from several hundred dollars to several thousand. Even more important is the necessity of everyone to play their part to see that fires do not start during these times.

The McPherson Fire Department is doing its part by flying a red flag on its pole during red flag warnings. The McPherson Sentinel and Mid Kansas Online will post stories about the warnings on their websites and KBBE will talk about current red flag conditions on the radio.

Open burning is part of life in Kansas, but burning has very restrictive limitations. Regardless of weather conditions, there is no burning within the city limits.

Outside of the city, a person can only burn if:  

1. They have a verbal or written authorization from McPherson County Communication Dispatch. Call (620) 245-1266 to receive authorization.

2. The wind speed is not greater than 15 mph.

3. Only burning for agricultural purposed areas is allowed in the open in McPherson County. If a person did not grow it, they cannot burn it.

4. Trash must be in a proper receptacle that is protected by a spark arrestor, wire basket, metal barrel or masonry enclosure with an opening no greater than a half inch.

5. Burning cannot take place within 50 feet of a building or within 10 feet of a property line or roadway line perimeter and the fire must be tended at all times. A fire cannot be lit and then left unattended.

The above mentioned instructions are a simple outline of the complete resolution for burning in McPherson County.

A complete copy must be obtained to ensure understanding of the regulations required to obtain a burn permit.

A copy can be found under the fire department section of the McPherson City website at