ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Although we’ve just experienced some heavy snow and most likely aren’t done with the winter weather, the DEC explains warming temperatures can quickly cause wildfire conditions to rise. A statewide spring brush burning ban will begin March 16 and run through May 14.

The annual brush burning ban has been enforced by the DEC since 2009. The DEC explains the ban aims to prevent wildfires and protect communities during heightened conditions for wildfires each spring.  Each year, DEC Forest Rangers extinguish dozens of wildfires that burn hundreds of acres. Local fire departments, many of which are staffed by volunteers, often have to leave their jobs and families to respond to wildfires caused by illegal debris fires.