Outdoor burning discouraged as wildfire threat increases across Oklahoma

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Wildfire in 2018

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – As the state is experiencing above normal temperatures, officials are warning about the threat of wildfires.

Current fire weather and fuels analytics indicate extreme fire danger in the Oklahoma Panhandle and northwestern Oklahoma into west-central Oklahoma.

“Forecasts are indicating that Wednesday’s wildfire event could likely be one order of magnitude greater than the 1,000+ acre fires we saw last Friday,” said Mark Goeller, State Forester and Director of Oklahoma Forestry Services. “We will again preposition OFS wildland firefighting resources to be prepared to respond to new fires that could eventually exceed 10,000 acres in size.” 

Citizens are urged to postpone any outdoor burning and welding until conditions improve. Oklahomans should also be extremely cautious with any outdoor activities that could spark a blaze including burning brush, outdoor camp fires, and charcoal grilling.

Also, if you are towing trailers, make sure safety chains are not dragging or able to hit the pavement.

“Heeding these simple recommendations has proven to lessen the occurrence of human caused fires,” said Goeller. “Simply waiting a few days until conditions improve may mean the difference in catastrophic wildfires that could threaten the safety of the public and firefighters.” 

A fire weather watch is in effect for Wednesday across much of western Oklahoma and the Oklahoma Panhandle. Report any smoke or fire by calling 911.

Burn bans are currently in effect for Alfalfa, Cimarron, Coal, Garvin, Jefferson, Major and Texas counties.

Copyright 2022 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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