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'It's easier to cause a wildfire than you might think': BLM shares tips to prevent human-caused wildfires

Posted at 5:46 PM, Jul 09, 2024

KUNA, Idaho — 80% of wildfires on Bureau of Land Management land are started by people. Extreme temperatures make it incredibly easy to accidentally start a wildfire. Some of the most common starts for local wildfires are chains dragging from trailers, malfunctioning vehicles starting roadside fires and people parking their hot cars in dry brush.

  • BLM recommends a chain cover or wrapping your trailer chains to keep them from starting roadside fires.
  • More information on fire prevention can be found here.
  • A map of active fires from the Idaho Department of Lands can be found here.

(Below is the transcript from the broadcast story)

Boise BLM Firefighters are hard at work battling wildfires across the region.

"It's easier to start a wildfire than you think it is," says Mary Clark, who works with the BLM Fire Information Team…

She tells me during extreme summer heat wildfires can easily ignite accidentally.

"It's things that maybe you wouldn't think about otherwise, like dragging chains or parking in hot dry areas," says Clark.

BLM Fire tells me that fires started by vehicles overheating or malfunctions are common during this time of year. Something as simple as pulling off the side of the road into some brush can cause major issues.

"When you park in that tall dry brush then it transfers over to that vegetation and that can also start a fire," added Clark.

"Yeah we're really moving into prime fire season with these hot temperatures and dry vegetative conditions," says Jared Jablonski, a Fire Mitigation Education Specialist for the Boise BLM.

He tells me that fire crews have been preparing for the busy season.

"We're gonna be fully staffed, we already are. And so, our crews have been training and prepping all spring long, getting ready for the fire season so they'll be ready"

Aside from fireworks around the 4th of July... Some of the most common starts of local wildfires are chains dragging on the road creating sparks, poorly maintained vehicles igniting roadside vegetation and people driving or parking on dry grasses.

"We want people to do their part when they're out there recreating you know really being careful and avoiding anything that can really ignite a wildfire," added Jablonski.