The area’s rural fire departments are urging residents to use caution with campfires and controlled burns as hot temperatures make this an ideal time for grass fires.
Scottsbluff Rural Fire Department Public Information Officer Paul Reisig says the cheat grass has fully matured and is ready to burn and in turn it gets the wet, green grass on fire. Reisig says a small fire Monday morning on Rifle Site Pass is indicative of the situation because the campfire was in green grass on top of a hill, but still managed to burn about half an acre because of the hot,dry conditions.
Reisig says, “It is really an unsafe burning condition out there”. He encourages staying away from campfires unless you have cleared an area around the fire and not conduct controlled burns unless they are being done in the early morning hours when there is some dew on the grass.