Caldwell Fire Chief: 'Heavy Rain Needed To Stop Grass Fires'

By: Alex Lotz Email
By: Alex Lotz Email

Dry weather is helping spread a lot of wildfires, and the chance for rain is not on our side. Fire departments across the Brazos Valley are urging people to follow the burn bans. Now, several fire chiefs are worried about what will happen if the area doesn't get any rain soon.

Julia Clark with the Wheelock Fire Department has one message to people living under a burn ban: "Pay attention to burn bans," Clark said. "it's a critical, critical thing."

She says even the smallest flame can start a massive fire. "People think, 'Oh I just have one little trash I'm going to burn,' one little thing and the wind will pop it up like that," Clark said.

Just yesterday, a fire in Robertson County quickly scorched about 15 acres. "It's better to let the trash wait than to risk anyone's property," Clark said.

Thirteen out of 16 counties in the Brazos Valley are under a burn ban, with the latest being Burleson. Since June, Burleson County has fought nearly 40 grass fires. They say conditions will only get worse if they don't see any rain soon.

"Everything is so dry right now," said David Pevehouse, Chief of the Caldwell Volunteer Fire Department.

Pevehouse said he has seen an increase in grass fires since he started volunteering over 20 years ago. He said adding windy conditions to dry, scorching temperatures makes for the perfect atmosphere to start a grass fire.

"A small one inch, two inch grass will still burn," said Pevehouse. He said people can only burn inside a pit when it's necessary, but should use extreme caution.

"If you're not paying attention, it can get away pretty quick," Pevehouse said.

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