SAN DIEGO -- Outdoor residential burn permits were suspended in San Diego and Imperial counties Monday in an effort to reduce the threat of wildfires amid rising temperatures and dry conditions.
Beginning at 8 a.m. Monday, the suspension will prohibit all outdoor burning of landscape debris, such as branches and leaves, according to Cal Fire San Diego.
Fire officials cited "the high volume of dead grass and hotter, drier conditions in the region," as well as high number of fires in 2018, as part of what prompted the suspensions.
Chief Thom Porter, director for Cal Fire, said, "Last year was a devastating reminder that the public cannot let their guard down. The dry, hot weather that fueled the massive fires last year will return again this year, so it is up to the public to be ready."
Officials did not indicate how long the permits could be suspended. Last year, burn permits were suspended from May until December, when wetter, cooler weather led Cal Fire to lift the suspensions.
Cal Fire may still issue restricted temporary burning permits if there is "an essential reason to do so," according to the agency's announcement. Agriculture, land management, fire training and industrial- related burning could still be allowed to continue upon inspection of the burn site by Cal Fire.
The burn prohibition does not apply to most camp fires.