Officials: Wildfire danger increasing across the state after hundreds of acres burn

OKLAHOMA CITY – While temperatures have slightly cooled across the state, officials say the wildfire danger is increasing.

Officials with Oklahoma Forestry Services are asking residents to use caution as hot temperatures and lack of rain are creating the potential for wildfires across the state.

“We experienced a big increase in fires in southeastern Oklahoma over the weekend, with 19 fires burning 743 acres compared to 23 fires in the entire month of June,” said Aranda Chamberlain, with Oklahoma Forestry Services’ Broken Bow office.  “We really want to encourage everyone to be aware of how dry it is and to be smart with anything that can cause a spark.”

Officials ask that you delay any burning until conditions improve, avoid dragging chains on vehicles and make sure that campfires are completely out. Also, use extra care when you are grilling outdoors.

If you see any new fires or suspicious smoke, call the closest fire department.

“We know that our increased ability to predict fire weather, combined with Oklahomans heeding the warnings, has a positive impact on preventing wildfires,” said Oklahoma Forestry Services Director and State Forester Mark Goeller.  “So we ask everyone to please use caution and help us spread the word to others.”

Currently, Jefferson and Jackson counties are the only ones under a burn ban.