There were several brush fires in Logan County last week, three on just Friday, which called for mutual aid response from several departments.
One was located on Stevenson Mill Road in the Auburn area. The Auburn Rural Fire Department, along with Russellville Rural, extinguished a large field fire that ended up taking an outside building before it was over. Another was in the Lewisburg area on Houchens Road off of Coopertown Road. This fire took a couple of hours to put out. While firefighters were cleaning up from this fire, they were paged out to one in the Dunmor-Deerlick area, which saw four agencies responding. This fire took a tobacco barn with it.
According to fire departments, all three fires were caused by people burning Friday.
Both Auburn Rural Fire Chief Jim Kutzman and Russellville Rural Fire Chief Cheryl Allen want to caution people on burning during this time of year. They both warn of high winds in the month of March, saying fire can very easily get away from someone pretty quickly, especially during the high wind months.
Some of the worst times for brush fire is the spring and fall. Allen says in the spring when the weather starts getting warmer, people start cleaning up outside from the winter, and they start burning debris collected. They don’t take into consideration the wind when they burn, and even if they burn in a barrel, said Allen, the wind can carry a spark a long way.
“All the grass is dead right now so it burns easy,” said Allen, adding this mixed with wind is a terrible combination.
Another act that threatens fields and wooded areas is throwing cigarettes out the automobile windows. This is also a way to start a brush fire.
Chief Kutzman reported his department alone has had several brush fires already this year.
“Right now everyone needs to be paying attention to the weather. It’s really dry and the wind is bad. Even Channel 13 put out a recent warning not to burn. People should put off burning a little while until the wind calms down,” said Kutzman, adding when you go to burn, you need to call central dispatch (270-726-4911) to let them know where you will be burning. Kutzman says this helps fire departments know ahead of time where a fire will be in case of an emergency.
Kutzman further added people should always wait until after 6 op.m. to burn and to check with the county beforehand to make sure there aren’t any burn bans in place at that time.