Fire Risk Down But Still High As Drought Continues; Chiefs Urge Caution With Fire

Date posted - March 14, 2012

Fire Department Grass RigWe are still in drought conditions in northwest Iowa, but we have received some recent moisture, so, because we had so many fires last fall, people are wondering what the fire risk is this spring.

Rock Rapids Fire Chief Ed Reck says northwest Iowa isn’t as dry now as last fall, but there is still a fire risk.

[audio:http://www.kiwaradio.com/files/Reck1.mp3|titles=Reck1]

Reck says we’re not to the point of issuing a burning ban yet, but people need to remain vigilant.
[audio:http://www.kiwaradio.com/files/Reck2.mp3|titles=Reck2]

Reck says if it’s windy or dry, it’s better not to risk it at all.

The drought conditions are causing other concerns as well in parts of northwest Iowa.

Sheldon officials are concerned that if the drought lasts too long, there may not be enough water available to fight a large fire if the water table continues to drop.

All of northwest Iowa except the extreme western edge is in the condition known as “severe drought” according to the US Drought Monitor. Conditions are improving after an inch and a half of rain fell in February, but we could still use another three to six inches of rain to get us back to normal.

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