An interesting question and comment was recently asked on the Facebook Group: WTF Just happened in Yakima.

Who can we contact about neighbors burning garbage in the backyard? All we smell is burning plastic and they're not even out there. - Mandi King

What a great question, and with as dry as it is in the valley, a very important one too!

Many in the Facebook thread advised calling local authorities or emergency services. If you do that, immediately state that it IS NOT AN EMERGENCY!

There is a burn ban in effect from July 1st until September 30th. (The question was asked just before it went into action). But there is no burning what so ever in residential "Yakima Urban Growth Areas" areas. Also, According to Washington State Legislature, no "burning of garbage, dead animals, asphalt, petroleum products, paints, rubber products, plastics, or any substance other than natural vegetation." Simply put, you can't burn garbage!

So who should you call in a case like the one asked? The family is dealing with the odor, and the fire appeared to be unattended. In an emergency situation, like you see that the fire is spreading, then yes, by all means call 9-1-1. If it's a nuisance, and no person or property is in immediate danger, then file a complaint with Yakima Regional Clean Air Agency. Inside city limits, reach out to the City of Yakima Code Enforcement, if you live outside city limits, you can contact Yakima County Code Enforcement. I would recommend the same course of action if all you are noticing is a smell, but no fire.

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