A LOOK AT DROUGHT AND ITS EFFECTS ON WILDFIRES.

FIRE WEATHER/FIRE PREVENTION AWARENESS WEEK CONTINUES TODAY WITH A
LOOK AT DROUGHT AND ITS EFFECTS ON WILDFIRES.

CLIMATIC CONDITIONS...SUCH AS LONG TERM DROUGHT...CAN PLAY A MAJOR
ROLE IN THE NUMBER AND INTENSITY OF WILDFIRES. THE LACK OF
RAINFALL...IN CONJUNCTION WITH VERY WARM TEMPERATURES...ALLOWS
FORREST FUELS SUCH AS DEAD LEAVES...TREES...AND BRANCHES TO BECOME
UNUSUALLY DRY. THE DRY FOREST FUELS ARE VERY SUSCEPTIBLE TO THE
POTENTIAL FOR FIRE...ESPECIALLY WHEN DAYTIME RELATIVE HUMIDITIES ARE
LOW AND WIND SPEEDS ARE HIGH. DURING THE DROUGHT OF 2007...OVER
3,000 WILDFIRES WERE REPORTED IN TENNESSEE...BURNING OVER 44,000
ACRES.


IT IS IMPORTANT TO BE ALERT TO THE INCREASED THREAT OF WILDFIRES
DURING DROUGHT CONDITIONS...ESPECIALLY IF YOUR HOME IS IN A FORESTED
AREA OR IF YOU PLAN ON VISITING AN AREA FOREST. THE FOLLOWING ARE
SOME SAFETY TIPS TO HELP PROTECT LIFE AND PROPERTY FROM WILDFIRES:


1. CHECK WITH LOCAL FIRE AUTHORITIES OR PUBLIC LAND MANAGEMENT      
   OFFICIALS TO OBTAIN CURRENT FIRE RESTRICTION INFORMATION.

2. CLEAR CAMPFIRE SITES DOWN TO BARE SOIL, CIRCLE THE FIRE PIT WITH
   ROCKS, AND BUILD THE CAMPFIRE AWAY FROM OVERHANGING BRANCHES...DRY
   GRASS...PINE NEEDLES...LOGS...AND STEEP SLOPES.

3. NEVER LEAVE A CAMPFIRE UNATTENDED. WHEN PUTTING OUT A CAMPFIRE...
   DROWN THE FIRE. KEEP A BUCKET OF WATER AND SHOVEL NEARBY.

4. HOMES NEAR FORESTED AREAS SHOULD HAVE TREES AND SHRUBS THINNED   
   AT LEAST 30 FEET FROM BUILDINGS. REMOVE LOWER TREE               
   BRANCHES...ESPECIALLY THOSE THAT MAY OVERHANG THE ROOF.

5. RAKE AND CLEAR SURFACE FUELS...SUCH AS LEAVES...LIMBS AND PINE   
   NEEDLES...AWAY FROM HOMES IN WOODED AREAS. FOR DETAILED INFORMATION
   ON PROTECTING YOUR HOME FROM WILDFIRES...VISIT THE FIREWISE      
   WEBSITE AT WWW.FIREWISE.ORG OR WWW.BURNSAFETN.ORG.

THE TOPIC FOR THURSDAY WILL BE...RED FLAG WARNING - EXTREME FIRE
WEATHER CONDITIONS.

&&

FOR ADDITIONAL FIRE WEATHER INFORMATION...PLEASE GO TO THE FOLLOWING
WEBSITE: WWW.SRH.NOAA.GOV/OHX/FIREWX.PHP.

$$



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