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Fire Officials Urge Caution during Harvest





SOUTH DAKOTA DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

NEWS RELEASE

 

For Immediate Release: October 28, 2014

Media Contact: Jeni Lawver, 605-381-7232

 

 

Fire Officials Urge Caution during Harvest

 

 

RAPID CITY, S.D. – The South Dakota Division of Wildland Fire is asking ranchers and farmers to take extra precautions to prevent wildfires when harvesting crops this fall.

 

 

The dry fuel conditions along with the warm and windy weather the state is experiencing make conditions ripe for extremely fast-moving prairie fires.

 

 

South Dakota Wildland Fire chief of operations Jim Strain strongly advises precautions, such as having a disk ready in the field, locating water tanks nearby and blowing chaff and dust off combines to minimize the potential for fires.

 

 

"We are looking at high to very high fire danger for the western and central portion of the state. We need to be cautious that we don't inadvertently start fires," Strain said.

 

 

A fire will start easily in the dry conditions and have the potential to become large and erratic, with extreme fire behavior. If a burn ban is in place in a county, no outdoor burning should take place.

 

 

Daily updates for the both the Black Hills Fire Danger and the Grasslands Fire Index can be viewed at South Dakota Division of Wildland Fire website at:  http://sdda.sd.gov/wildland-fire/state-fire-information/fire-danger/.

 

 

For more information about fire safety on the farm and ranch, visit http://sdda.sd.gov and search for “Wildland Urban Interface” and click on the “Firewise on the Farm” articles.

 

Agriculture is South Dakota's No. 1 industry, generating $25.6 billion in annual economic activity and employing 115,651 South Dakotans. The South Dakota Department of Agriculture's mission is to promote, protect, preserve and improve this industry for today and tomorrow. Visit us online at http://sdda.sd.gov or find us on Facebook and Twitter.

 

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