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The summer of 2023 seems to be a hot one so far. East Texans have been baking in the hot summer sun along with the outdoor animals and vegetation. We've been enduring and living through numerous days with heat advisories and excessive heat warnings due to high humidity levels and now things are starting to dry out and that could end up being a big problem if a fire were to ignite.

While we've been hovering around the 100-degree mark for over a week now, a brief cool-down is expected this weekend with a slight chance of rain for our northern and central counties, but it will not be enough to ease the increasing drought index in East Texas. While it will be a brief cool down, in the mid-90s, we'll be right back in the upper-90s to near 100 by Monday of next week.

Some East Texas counties are beginning to appear on the U.S. Drought Monitor chart and being classified as 'abnormally dry' or in the 'moderate drought' stage. Because of these dry conditions, some East Texas counties have enacted burn bans that will severely restrict any outdoor burning.

East Texas counties currently under burn bans:

According to the Texas A&M Forestry Service, there are currently 113 Texas counties under burn bans, while 141 are not. It is now illegal to do any kind of outdoor burning in nearly half of the state of Texas. If your county is currently not under a burn ban it is recommended that if you do any kind of outdoor burning, monitor that fire intently because it could get out of control quickly.

Texas A&M Forestry Service
Texas A&M Forestry Service

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