Wildfires up in NE Washington

RaeLynn Ricarte

There have been 40 grass fires already this year in the Spokane and Northeastern Washington areas, up from 22 last year, which has led Department of Natural Resource officials to urge caution in burning yard and field debris.

“Most of these fires were field burns that got out of control,” says Veronica Randall, public information officer for the agency.

She said even though the weather is cool, there is a lot of dead grasses left over from winter that is good fuel for fires.

In a few weeks, Randall said there will be a lot of greenery in fields and forests that is more difficult to burn because of its moisture content – at least until things dry out in the summer months and fire danger levels are set by state and federal natural resource agencies.

Danger levels are dependent upon weather and fuel conditions that affect the moisture content of vegetation, she said. The spring months bring rain that lowers the fire danger and then things start drying out as summer approaches.

“You will typically start seeing shutdowns in June and a complete burn ban in early July,” said Randall.

Read the full story in the March 31, 2021 edition of the Deer Park Tribune.


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