JONES COUNTY, Miss. (WHLT) – According to the Mississippi Forestry Commission (MFC), most of the state is still under a burn ban.

Hot and dry conditions are causing fires to quickly grow out of control.

“When these fires do start, they’re spreading really fast, and they are also burning very intensely. And they’re taking longer times to put them out,” said Meacham Harlow, public information officer for the MFC.

With more than 500 large fires across Mississippi, fire officials are asking people to refrain from burning even the smallest of fires.

“The threat is serious, and we’ve had lots of homes, structures, neighborhoods threatened with a lot of these wildfires and getting ahead of that wildfire with our dozers and putting liner around that wildfire. It takes time,” stated Harlow.

This past weekend, a small fire in Ellisville rapidly grew out of control, causing multiple firefighters to respond.

“With the dryness and the wind, it really led to a massive situation as that small fire that he had got out of control very quickly, and it spread to between 40 and 50 acres extremely quickly,” said Dana Bumgardner, public information officer for the Jones County Fire Council.

Anyone who is caught burning during the burn ban could face a fine up to $500.