Wildfire Hazards Persist with Dry Weather
Although temperatures are finally cooling off, Texans continue to face extreme wildfire danger due to persistent drought conditions. To avoid the risk of sparking a fire:
- Do not park vehicles in tall, dry grass and weeds that could be ignited by hot catalytic converters.
- Crush cigarettes in an ashtray and make sure they really are out. Do not throw them out the window.
- Be cautious about outdoor activities that might cause sparks or fires.
- Do not burn trash without a permit and supervision from your local fire department. Sparks can easily escape from burning trash. There are many burn bans in effect in North Texas, so check before you burn.
- Avoid using welding or grinding equipment near dry weeds and grass.
Don’t Drive Into Smoke on the Road
Wind-driven wildfire can move as fast as 60 miles per hour. When you see thick smoke across a highway, do not drive into it. Slow down. Prepare to stop and turn around, if possible. Activate your emergency flashers to warn vehicles following you. Check for oncoming traffic. Make sure you can turn around safely. Remember, when there is dense smoke on the road, do not drive in to it.
Stay Alert to Wildfire Danger When Traveling
Check fire and weather conditions before you travel. Monitor radio broadcasts while traveling. In areas where there may be wildfire, watch for highway signs, traffic control personnel and firefighters. Slow down and prepare to stop when they signal you to do so. Remember, if you see dense smoke on the road, do not drive into it.
Wildfire Danger to Rural Homes and Suburbs
Whether you live in a rural or suburban area, you should protect your home from the dangers of wildfire. Protect your property by clearing brush and grass away from your home and buildings. Clear out brush between trees. Prune lower branches. Make sure areas under utility lines are clear of brush, tall grass and trees so that utility service will continue. Create a fire break by clearing vegetation from areas between your house and nearby fields or wilderness areas.
If you see a fire, don’t assume that it has already been reported. Call 9-1-1.