More East Texas counties under burn bans due to dry, windy conditions
EAST, Texas (KLTV) - Parts of East Texas are in desperate need of rain. Dry, low humidity and windy conditions are causing wildfires to increased. And as a result, more burn bans have been issued.
“They’ve (fires) increased as a product of the lifting of the burn bans which happened a couple weeks ago and people got the opportunity to you know burn their trash, burn their brush piles and stuff. And we’ve seen a lot of fires come about as a product of that.” says the Texas A&M Forest Service PIO, Sean Dugan.
So far, Cherokee, Houston, Polk and Sabine counties are under burn bans. And today, Panola and Anderson county were added to the list. Anderson county emergency management coordinator, Christina Crockett tells us dryness is a major cause.
“We’re ranging anywhere from a 400 to a 700 in our KBDI index for the dryness we have throughout the county. We are under the drought conditions that the state has issued out. We’ve had a few fires, so the judge decided it would be best to go ahead and re-issue the burn ban since we don’t have rain in the near future.” says Crockett.
The Texas A&M Forest Service warns that while other counties may not be under formal burn bans, people in those counties should also exercise caution.
Dugan says, “If you start a fire in the morning, you’ll have to stay with it through the afternoon. A lot of fires that we see are product of somebody starting a fire in the morning when it’s calm, cool and moist and then you know they leave it in the afternoon. It heats up, wind starts blowing and then it becomes a wildfire.”
He also says more people will be in the woods and fire activity may increase as we head into archery hunting season and bonfire season.
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