KNOXVILLE (WATE) – A burn ban in Knox County that was issued on November 1 was lifted.
Knox County Air Quality Management originally issued a mandatory ban on open burning in Knox County due to conditions of severe drought. Governor Bill Haslam issued a regional ban on burning in 51 counties, including Knox County, in response to the ongoing drought and wildfire emergency. That ban expired on December 15.Related:Regional burn ban issued for entire East Tennessee area
There has been a total of 1,434 fires burning 44,090 acres in East Tennessee in 2016. Forty-eight percent of those fires are believed to be arson, burning 34,000 acres.
Currently, there are two fires burning a total of 12 acres in East Tennessee. A fire in Hancock County is burning 10 acres. It is believed to be caused by arson. A fire in Hawkins County burned around two acres and was caused by debris.