DNR to lift burning ban in northwestern Wis.

Fears of a raging forest fire sweeping across far northwestern Wisconsin have abated enough that state officials plan to lift burning restrictions in the area this week.

Severe storms last summer downed hundreds of thousands of trees across the region. Department of Natural Resources officials last month outlawed all burning in portions of Burnett, Douglas, Polk and Washburn counties, fearing a single spark could ignite a wildfire that could race through the downed timber and engulf the area.

Now forestry officials say the area has received enough precipitation and remaining trees have greened up enough to reduce the fire risk.

They plan to lift the emergency burning restrictions at 12:01 a.m. Thursday, but still want people to be extremely careful with campfires and cigarettes.