In an effort to ensure a safer city, a burn ban is now in effect in Olathe because of the dry weather and temperature conditions.
Shawnee and Overland Park later issued burn bans Wednesday afternoon. Edwardsville in Wyandotte County is also under a burn ban.
The Olathe Fire Department said this preventive measure excludes grills and recreational activities like fire pits.
The ban will be reviewed daily and remain in place until it is lifted by the Olathe Fire Department.
"Proactive fire prevention measures such as this are important to helping reduce the community's risk to fire," Olathe Division Chief and Fire Marshal Brad Henson said.
The heat, low humidity and no rain mean the bans are expected to be in place for some time.
"It's hot, it's going to stay hot, it's going to stay dry and going to stay windy for the next several days," Henson said.
A burn ban, if in effect on Independence Day, will not impact the public fireworks display at the Great Mall of the Great Plains on July 4. Professionals take extensive safety precautions and follow many regulations when creating such spectacular displays.
As a reminder, the sale, use or possession of fireworks in Olathe is prohibited.
In Shawnee, officials cited the "extreme dry conditions and insufficient rainfall." The burn ban will be reviewed daily.
"Citizens that have a burn permit should contact the city of Shawnee Fire Department after the burn ban has been lifted to make arrangements for new burn permits," according to a news release. "This burn ban will not impact professional public firework displays because of the extensive safety precautions that must be achieved to obtain a permit."
Within Shawnee, only "snakes and caps" fireworks are permitted. Possessing illegal fireworks can lead to a $500 fine and confiscation of fireworks.
In Overland Park, all open burning and recreational burning is suspended until further notice. Any burn permits previously issued are no longer valid. Anyone caught violating it faces a $500 fine.
"Outdoor grilling is still permitted, but grillers are urged to use extreme caution and to be sure they have a means of fire suppression available when grilling," according to a news release from Overland Park.
Fireworks are illegal in Overland Park. Violators are subject to fines and must pay damages caused by illegal fireworks.
Henson said anyone grilling in the area should use caution.
"Once the ember goes up in the air, it's out of their control," Henson said. "So we try to tell people to be careful when they barbecue. Recreational fires aren't included in the ban, but they can still cause issues."
Kansas City, arguably the most lenient municipality when it comes to fireworks, does not have a burn ban in place as of now. City officials are monitoring the situation closely.
The fewer fires for firefighters to battle the better.
"We want to try and prevent fires," Henson said. "Right now, we're really trying to keep the firefighters from having to go out and work in this. If they do, it's very taxing on us and causes issues with the physical condition of our personnel."
In KCK and Wyandotte County, officials have not issued a burn ban. There is currently no ban on the sale or use of legal fireworks. City ordinance would allow for a ban because of the extreme weather conditions, but officials said that is unlikely to occur. Officials said they will monitor temperature, humidity and wind speed to determine if a ban is needed.
Residents are urged to use "extreme caution" when using fireworks and adults should always be present. Fireworks are prohibited in Wyandotte County parks.
Click here for a U.S. drought monitor map of the Midwest.
Copyright 2012 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.
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