The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources cautions residents and visitors to be aware of elevated fire conditions through the weekend. An unintentional spark in the hot, gusty and abnormally dry conditions could ignite a wildfire.
Casey McCoy, DNR wildlife prevention supervisor, says that despite the green-up of vegetation, many areas in northern Minnesota are two-to-three inches below average for spring rainfall. This shortfall has dried out trees, shrubs and grasses in the region, and when combined with forecast conditions – temperatures near the century mark, low humidity and gusty winds – will result in an increased risk for wildfires.
“Don’t be fooled just because things look green. This is a dangerous time for wildfires,” McCoy said. He notes that due to dry conditions, wildfire response crews have reported more extreme wildfire behavior than is typical for this time of year. “Be extra cautious with campfires and any outdoor activities that could produce heat or a spark as you enjoy the summer weekend.” Other fire prevention reminders include:
Minnesota’s wildland fire management agencies report 1,259 wildland fires have burned more than 34,000 acres since the beginning of March.
Check current fire danger conditions at the DNR statewide fire danger and burning restrictions map. If you do see a wildfire, call 911.