ST. CLOUD -- The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has issued spring burning restrictions for several central Minnesota counties including Stearns, Benton, and Sherburne counties effective immediately.

The burning ban prohibits the burning of brush, yard waste or other debris until the spring green-up. The state won't be issuing any burning permits for the affected counties until that time.

In a statement, DNR Fire Prevention Supervisor Casey McCoy says "since issuing spring burning restrictions, the state has reduced wildfires by nearly a third".

People who violate the burning restrictions will be held responsible if their fire escapes and damages other property.

Other counties under the spring burning restrictions include Anoka, Chisago, Hennepin, Isanti, Kanabec, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Pine, Ramsey, Todd, Washington, and Wright.

Additional counties will be added as conditions change.

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