(Press Release, April 2, 2020)
The Pocatello Fire Department is not issuing new burn permits and is asking residents to cease open burning in Pocatello due to health concerns surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.
Under the temporary restriction, residents will not receive a burn permit to burn yard waste in Pocatello city limits. Permits that have already been issued are suspended until the burn restriction is lifted. At this time, no date has been set.
The use of gas fire pits and/or charcoal briquettes or gas grills when used in appliances designed for food preparation and recreational fires under 3 feet in diameter in a contained fire ring or device (e.g. cooking, campfire, religious, etc.) are exempt from the burn restriction.
According to the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality, “smoke from open burning can cause unnecessary public health and safety concerns” including:
- Smoke inhalation can cause upper respiratory symptoms, which could be incorrectly attributed to COVID-19.
- Smoke exposure impacts can lead to unnecessary testing or self-isolation.
- Personal protective equipment to reduce smoke exposure is not readily available at this time.Residents who have questions regarding the burn restriction can contact Pocatello Fire Department Prevention Bureau at 208-234-6201.
City officials encourage all residents to take precautions to protect themselves from novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Additional information on ways to help prevent the spread of the disease can be found at https://siphidaho.org/coronavirus.php, https://coronavirus.idaho.gov/, and https://www.cdc.gov/.