Natural Resources
9:35 am
Thu May 16, 2013

Fire Danger Remains High; Officials Warn Against Burning

Douglas-Bayfield fire
Credit Wisconsin DNR

The DNR says that wildfire which burned more than nine thousand acres in Douglas and Bayfield counties is northern Wisconsin's biggest forest fire in nearly 33 years.

DNR Wildfire Prevention Specialist Catherine Koele says conditions are perfect for fire...

 

"....we all became a little complacent with all the snow and rain we've had. We thought fire season would sneak by us ....(the fire) consumed about 9,000 acres and 47 structures..."

 

The burned area as recently as two weeks ago had more than a foot of snow on the ground. But a fire danger time is just after the snow leaves and prior to the 'green up' of the forest.

Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest spokesperson Suzanne Flory says the fire wasn't far from national forest land...

 

"....we expect to have critical fire danger all across the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest and we do have a lot of our fire folks on standby we also have some of our personnel helping out with the large fire(in Douglas county)..."

That's the Douglas and Bayfield fire. The DNR is investigating whether logging activities might have started the fire, which was helped along by dry and windy conditions. Fire danger in the Northwoods remains as "high" today.

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