Fire Danger In Benton County Is Very High
The fire danger forecast for all of Benton County was raised to the level of VERY HIGH this week. This means restrictions for residents and farmers.
Clark Posey spends most of his time inspecting new construction with his appointed position as the Fire Marshal for the county. Part of his job is to watch for changing environmental conditions and to alert people when restrictions on burning must take place.
Posey: “ Once the calculated fuel model for fire reaches between 12 and 16, it’s classified as very high. And at that point, fire start really easily. And the causes may spread faster than suppression resources can travel. So we need to really pay attention to just about anything that we’re doing outside.”
Posey said just a few weeks ago a person was mowing their grass which caused a spark that resulted in a fire. Now all outdoor burning is restricted for residents and even agricultural burning is restricted because of the fire danger. Posey thinks with the high temps in the forecast for the area, they may move to extreme fire danger.
Posey: “Because of the spring being as wet as it was, it’s kind of pushed everything back a little farther. You know, before we moved in at the extreme level, by the Fourth of July, and we weren’t this year, but I’m anticipating that change pretty shortly.”
The county is large and fire suppression resources, meaning fire fighters and equipment are limited. Posey wants residents to be cautious as temperatures increase.