Wildland Fire Emergency Alert in Wisconsin
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR), in conjunction with the National Weather Service, has issued a Red Flag Warning for today, Wednesday, April 12, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. for the following counties:Adams, Buffalo, Calumet, Columbia, Crawford, Dane, Dodge, Fond du Lac, Grant, Green Lake, Green, Iowa, Jackson, Jefferson, Juneau, Kenosha, La Crosse, Lafayette, Marquette, Milwaukee, Monroe, Outagamie, Ozaukee, Portage, Racine, Richland, Rock, Sauk, Sheboygan, Trempealeau, Vernon, Walworth, Washington, Waukesha, Waupaca, Waushara, Winnebago and Wood counties, including the snow-free areas of Clark, Marathon and Shawano counties.
A Red Flag Warning is issued when a variety of weather factors come together to create especially dangerous wildland fire conditions. Warm temperatures, low humidity, gusty winds and exceptionally dry fuels are anticipated and can result in catastrophic fires.As a result, the DNR is moving to Extreme fire danger in those counties and will continue to prohibit burning with all DNR-issued burning permits. The public should be especially careful with any activities that could potentially lead to a wildland fire.Campfires, ashes from fireplaces, outdoor grills, smoking, chainsaws, off-road vehicles or other small engines have the potential to throw a spark, ignite a fire and spread quickly. Please use extreme caution until the fire weather improves.
Additionally, Gov. Tony Evers today signed Executive Order #191 declaring a State of Emergency in response to elevated wildfire conditions throughout Wisconsin.The Executive Order will allow wildfire suppression support from the Wisconsin National Guard and assist with rapidly mobilizing the Guard’s Black Hawk helicopters to the areas of the state in most need of aerial fire suppression resources during the spring fire season which generally lasts through May. Executive Order #191 also directs all Wisconsin state agencies to assist as appropriate in wildfire prevention, response and recovery efforts.The DNR responded to nearly 60 wildfires in the last week. Fire control officials will be on high alert across the entire state, pre-positioning equipment for rapid response, including access to the Wisconsin Army National Guard Blackhawk helicopters with bucket capability.
Most of the state continues to be under critical fire danger. Northern adjacent counties to the Red Flag area have similar conditions, however, some snow cover remains but is quickly melting. The DNR anticipates continued dry, elevated fire conditions with a slight reprieve heading into the weekend with some chances of rain.
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