You have permission to edit this article.

Let's not create another crisis — don't start a wildfire

  • 1 min to read
U-B logo

Multitasking can be tricky. It can be even more dicey when dealing with multiply crises.

This is why it’s critical that those spending time in our forests or other places in nature be extra careful when it comes to fires.

The current coronavirus pandemic crisis is a big one, so an outbreak of wildfires — which have been fierce in recent years — would cause myriad complications. Social distancing as crews attack fires will be a feat.

The best approach is to stop fires before they begin.

Washington state just ordered a burn ban on all 12 million acres of public and private forest land after four wildfires began in the past week. The ban will last until Sept. 30 unless conditions improve.

“We are entering a critical period for our firefighters with temperatures rising and rapidly drying fuels on the ground,” said George Geissler, deputy for the state Department of Natural Resource’s wildfire division and state forester. “We’ll continue to respond with our air and ground assets as needed, but we hope the public will take the burn ban seriously.”

Ultimately, it’s up to each of us to make certain we have not left behind a smoldering pile of wood or some smoking embers.

As Smokey Bear says, “Only you can prevent forest fires.”