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Bexar County Judge Wolff issues disaster declaration as fire threat continues for region

Much of Texas is experiencing a severe dry spell this spring, resulting in wildfires and other fire threats.

SAN ANTONIO — As crews continue to extinguish a blaze which has burned more than 3,000 acres on JBSA-Camp Bullis since sparking Saturday, Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff is putting the community on high alert for continued fire danger. 

Wolff on Tuesday afternoon issued a local disaster declaration amid the fire threat, in the process temporarily banning outdoor fires for at least a week, when the Bexar County Commissioners Court next convenes. 

"We cannot sit idly by and hope that everybody does their part," Wolff is quoted as saying in a release. "With conditions like these, we had to step in and do everything within our means to minimize the fire danger."

Anyone who violates the burn ban could be slapped with a $1,000 fine. 

The announcement comes amid a major dry spell in the region, elevating the fire threat in recent weeks. Residents in nearby Medina County were briefly displaced as a fire burned through their backyards, while windy conditions have kept local first responders on their toes. 

The National Drought Monitor shows most of Bexar County currently experiencing Severe Drought, the third-highest threshold on its meter; a sliver of the county's west side is experiencing the even-worse level of Extreme Drought, affecting communities like Helotes, Cross Mountain and Scenic Oaks. 

The drought triggered stricter watering rules for San Antonio-area residents on Tuesday, which includes limiting irrigation or sprinkling to the windows of 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. 

The declaration will stay in effect at least through April 19. 

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