Natrona County Fire District sees rise in number of fires since fire restrictions put in place

Published: Jul. 11, 2022 at 7:52 PM CDT
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CASPER, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - On July 7, 2022 the Natrona County Fire District issued a stage one fire restriction for citizens of Natrona County. This is not a complete ban on fires but does restrict burns to campfires, and burn barrels with spark arrestors. Although this restriction has been put into place there has been a rise in fires since its introduction.

Between July 7, and July 11, the Natrona County Fire district has responded to 5 fires, some of which had large impact radiuses. One of which occurred in Reid Canyon on July 7. 6.8 acres of land were burned in this fire and a residence was lost in the fire as well.

“A family ended up losing all their possessions out of that fire. We contacted Red Cross and a Natrona County Burn Fund check was written for them and we tried to do everything we can for that family but unfortunately that was caused by an unattended burn barrel,” said Fire District Public Information Officer Leighton Burgen.

This was followed by a fire in Ponderosa Park on July 8, which was caused by a lightning strike to a tree. NCFD also responded to a fire on Cattle Trail the same day which destroyed over 30 acres of land and caused the department to evacuate some homes, but no residents were lost due to this fire. The Cattle Trail fire was caused by a person burning after the fire restriction and not following proper guidelines so they have been issued a ticket.

On July 10, Kortes fire was announced to be 100% contained but not until after it had done damage to over 300 acres of land. This fire affected BLM, State, and private land all together but occurred in Carbon county.

The NCFD wants to remind folks of ways that they can help tp prevent fires beyond just adhering to the fire restrictions. Often ways that citizens can help to prevent these occurrences are small ways you might not think of.

“Make sure your fires are cold to the touch, completely out, you can put your hands on the coals and you’re not going to get burned. That’s the best way to tell if your fire’s out. Make sure your grass is chopped down, mowed, wherever you’re doing your burn. Tie your chains up, get them up off the ground if you’re hauling anything. That can also be a huge cause of fires. Exhaust on vehicles can be very hot, don’t park on tall grasses because that can also start fires,” Said Mr. Burgen.

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