Grass fires consume hundreds of acres

By John Richmeier
Leavenworth Times – March 13, 2018

An emergency management official estimates that about 20 grass fires were reported over the weekend in Leavenworth County.

Leavenworth County Emergency Management Director Chuck Magaha estimated that the fires consumed about 500 acres of vegetation.

Most of the grass fires were small, but Magaha said there were a couple of large grass fires in the Easton area and a large one south of Tonganoxie.

Many of the grass fires reported over the weekend were started by people who had burn permits. But Magaha said people still need to show caution once they have been issued burn permits.

At 12:30 p.m. Saturday, officials stopped issuing burn permits for unincorporated areas of the county. That is because nearly all of the fire departments in the county were busy with grass fires, Magaha said.

“We were out of resources in the county,” he said.

Magaha said people who obtain burn permits need to make sure they have an adequate water supply to keep fires from becoming out of control. He said there also needs to be an adequate number of people on hand to keep fires under control.

Magaha said it also is a good idea to inform neighbors about plans to burn so people in the area do not become alarmed.

It is anticipated that temperatures in the area will warm up later in the week. Magaha said this likely will reduce humidity and increase the danger of grass fires.

Magaha said vegetation in the area is extremely dry.

“It is a tinderbox,” he said.

Even with rain, the danger of grass fires will not diminish substantially until vegetation “greens up,” he said.


Posted by Gwen Dorr Romine, KSFFA Webmaster
KSFFA’s Fire News Blog Home Page

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