Wildfire season expected to cause problems in Idaho if people aren't careful

Posted at 5:27 PM, Jun 28, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-28 19:27:34-04

Experts believe this wildfire season will be an above average summer for wildfires, they cited a mild winter that allowed grass to survive, when added to the growth of grass this year fire officials said that the fuel to cause a large wildfire is present.

In 2017, more than 2/3 of the wildfires were started by humans and a representative of the BLM said that in the Boise area humans caused 80 percent of the wildfires.

Fire officials gathered on Table Rock to advise the public on how they can help this fire season, two years ago a fire started on Table Rock with a roman candle firework, that fire that burned more than 2,000 acres and destroyed a home.

Fire officials said that fireworks are prohibited on federal and public lands, the fire management officer with the Boise National Forest said that people who violate this can be punished a maximum of six months in prison and or a $5,000 fine.

Within the City of Boise Fire Chief Dennis Doan wants the public to know that aerial fireworks are illegal and recommends that people enjoy the fireworks shows that the city puts on.

"I want everybody to know from the buyer to the seller that if you cause a fire in my jurisdiction, we will come after restitution," said Chief Doan.

In addition, during the fire season that lasts until October 20th fire officials said that shooting incendiary and tracer rounds are illegal as well as exploding targets.

"People need to be very careful when they are shooting or recreating on public land," said Andy Delmas of the BLM. "Have water, have a fire extinguisher and make sure they are in a clear area."

The BLM, the Idaho Department of Lands, the National Forest Service, the National Interagency Fire Center and the Boise City Fire Department all work together and they all said that if fire investigators find that you negligently started a fire, you can expect to receive a bill.

"We are in the process of billing just from last year over three million dollars," said Idaho Department of Lands Fire Warden Casper Urbanek. "That's significant."

Fire officials also warn the public to make sure that campfires are completely extinguished and they said a lot of fires start after cars break down, they said do not park over dry grass.