Warm and Dry Weather Presents Fire Concerns

Brandon Weathers
Updated: April 19, 2019 10:40 PM

The warm and dry weather that many of us have been waiting for has begun. With it, the DNR has reported an increase in wildfire activitiy. The Chippewa National Forest had their first prescribed fire of the year Friday of about 2,600 acres east of Walker, Minnesota.

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Duluth firefighter Tony Schilling said people often underestimate fire dangers this time of year because of rain and snowmelt.

"Right now it’s still pretty brown, we’re starting to see a little bit of green up, but it’s going to dry out quick, that snow is going to disappear, and then people are going to want to get out and take care of leaves and things they maybe didn’t get to last Fall, and they’re going to want to start burning," Schilling said. "So I think it’s important to be aware of what’s going on and how quickly things do dry out and start to change.”

Schilling has some advice for safe burning this Spring. "Whether it's a campfire for recreation, or if you're just trying to do some clean-up or whatever, be mindful. Clean the area around it of combustible products, have a source of extinguishment ready, whether it's a fire extinguisher if you have one, or a garden hose, something even as simple as a rake or shovel to get after those things."

If things do get out of hand, local fire departments are there to help. "I think sometimes people put off calling us because they don't want to get in trouble or they think they're inconveniencing us, and that's the opposite of what you need to do," Schilling said.

In the event of a wildfire, the DNR wants to remind the public of the dangers drones present in interfering with the fire suppression process.

Apply for a Wisconsin Burning Permit
Apply for a Minnesota Burning Permit


Brandon Weathers

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