Deputy Fire Marshal: ‘The wind will just take the fire out of your control’

SEDGWICK COUNTY, Kan. (KSNW) – Sedgwick County fire crews are urging residents to use caution this weekend as a majority of the state is under an extreme fire watch.

“It could be something as simple as a discarded cigarette and the wind is blowing just right and the grass is just the right height, we could have a major incident,” said Sedgwick County Deputy Fire Marshal Bill Hinkle.

Kansas firefighters have battled a number of grass fires in the last week. On Friday, a 2-acre fire broke out in between two Hutchinson homes. A large grass fire burned near the town of Holcomb earlier this week and in Salina flames scorched a field on Thursday.

“I think this year has just been worse because we have had lack of precipitation. The humidity has always been low and we seem to be having a lot of high winds with the different fronts coming through,” Hinkle said.

Hinkle said a combination of low humidity, high winds and little moisture makes for perfect fire danger weather.

“It has definitely enhanced the risk this year,” Hinkle said. “The wind will just take the fire out of your control and you could burn your property or your neighbors property.”

Hinkle said while the county has not implemented a burn ban, fire crews are warning residents to use caution.

“We are not discouraging you from using fire or barbecuing, but if you need to use fire to burn trash just do it cautiously especially over this weekend when the fire danger is so high,” he said.