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Don't Be Fooled By The Stormy Spring—Emergency Manager Says Wildfires Still A Threat

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Utah Division Of Forestry Fire State Lands
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Although it’s been a wet spring, summer heat could dry out plant growth propelled by the rain, providing fuel for wildfires. 

Summit County Emergency Manager Chris Crowley says everyone should be aware of the danger that wildland fires pose to Summit County.

“You can start a wildland fire from the simplest of mistakes," Crowley said. "For instance, the Brian Head fire was a guy burning off his weeds. That was a terrible fire.”

Crowley does not recommend burning weeds, but a permit is required for open burns—for everything but campfires in fire pits. The Summit County fire warden issues the permits, and fires must be manned at all times. There are other rules that depend on the time and location of the burn.

“Be aware of red-flag days, when we don't allow any burning," Crowley said. "Wind conditions, of course, dictate most of those. If we have winds that are even slightly high, it's not a good day to burn.”

As for campfires, Crowley says to use common sense, clearing out nearby flammable materials and dousing embers with a lot of water. Crowley also emphasizes creating a defensible space around homes, eliminating fire threats, such as dead trees and propane tanks, that are too close to the house.