Summer Fire Danger
The transition from cold and wet winter to warm, dryer weather contributes to higher levels of fire danger. As temperatures starts to rise in the late spring and early summer, lower levels of rainfall, bright sunshine and high wind increase the chance of dry brush creating a flame. Uncontrollable wildfires threaten enormous forested areas leading to widespread incineration of woods and nearby structures. Campfires and grills can provide the single spark to mass destruction. Cigarettes thrown from a car can turn leaves and trees into a burning hotbox. Even small brush fires and smoking mulch can easily spread, setting nearby structures alight.
The public can help minimize the potential for summer fires by being aware of atmospheric conditions and taking notice of weather alerts. The US Forest Service posts daily fire danger levels at State and National Parks around the country to keep residents up to date. Campers especially need to be very mindful of their activity in the forest to prevent the ground around them from developing a flame. Power companies should inspect equipment near wooded areas on a regular basis and proactively replace ageing parts and systems. Home and business owners need to keep excessive leaves and brush away from structures to prevent potential flammability during prolonged dry weather.
Summer is the time for enjoying the outdoors, relaxing and having fun. It is to everyone’s benefit for each of us to do our best to prevent warm weather fires from harming the environment we live in.