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As The Snow Leaves The Risk Of Wildfire Grows


Every county except one in the Northwoods is considered by the DNR to have a high potential for wildfires.

Vilas county is said to have a moderate danger. Fire prevention experts say the time just after the snow leaves until the forests and fields green up is a prime time for wildfires to break out. The weather has turned warmer and windy this week, also raising the bar on conditions needed for wildfire.

DNR wildfire prevention specialist Catherine Koele in Woodruff says fire season is here...

"...In the last two days we've had nearly 80 wildfires across the state. With the exception of Vilas county we've seen them scattered from the north to the south. Definitely it's here and we've had a lot of activity the last couple of days...."

While Vilas did not have a fire, wildfires were reported this week in Oneida, Langlade and Forest counties. She says right now folks are out cleaning up yards...

"....the majority of the fires we see are folks out and about cleaning up their yards and debris burning is the number one cause. That's the majority of the fires we've seen. We've also seen some equipment fires. With the dry conditions and high winds any little spark can start a fire and we can see a fire spread...."

Koele says you can get a free burning permit by going to the DNR website and key the word 'fire', or you can call 888-WIS BURN.(947-2876). You can also visit an emergency fire warden or DNR office to get a permit in-person. She says make sure to check to see if burning is allowed on the day you wish to burn.

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