Fire restrictions slapped on northern Wisconsin’s blow down areaThe National Weather Service has put out a notice that the abnormally warm, sunny weather has a dark side: It makes fires more likely in the blow down area of far northern Wisconsin.
By: By Mike Simonson/Wisconsin Public Radio, Superior Telegram
The National Weather Service has put out a notice that the abnormally warm, sunny weather has a dark side: It makes fires more likely in the blow down area of far northern Wisconsin.
Burnett County Emergency Management Director Rhonda Reynolds says add the usual brown-up that autumn brings.
“A lot of the understory is starting to die as a natural progression as we move into fall and so things are starting to get a little crisp in the woods.”
Then add low humidity, a gusty wind out of the south, and National Weather Service Meteorologist Greg Frosig says you have the recipe for unusually tinder conditions.
“The only reason that it’s that unusual is that its been so dry. We were looking earlier this morning and it looks like northern Wisconsin and northeastern and eastern Minnesota have only picked up a quarter of an inch of rain over the last three weeks.”
Department of Natural Resources Forestry Team Leader Bob Harts-horn says they have just begun a fire ban with the exception of campfires in Douglas, Burnett, and Washburn Counties. And he’s not crazy about campfires either, especially in the blowdown areas from last summer’s 100 miles per hour storm. More than a quarter of a million trees blew down in a July 1st storm last year in far northern Wisconsin and eastern Minnesota.
“We’ve got to be realistic. There are still areas that aren’t salvaged and probably never will be salvaged. So when we get into these very long periods of dry weather, those bigger diameter logs, sticks and everything that’s in those blowdown areas, it just makes it more difficult and raises potential for a serious fires.”