ALBANY, NY (WNY News Now) – The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is urging New Yorkers to practice safety when building campfires due to a High Risk for wildfires across the state.
All of New York State is now at a High Risk for wildfires, meaning that any outdoor fire can spread quickly, especially if the wind picks up. Fires may become serious and difficult to control unless the fire is attacked while it’s small.
According to NYSDEC, there are currently six active wildfires across the state, burning over 47 acres of land, the majority of which were started by unattended campfires. Officials remind residents that unattended campfires are among the Top 5 causes of wildfires.
”If you’re enjoying the country during these last few weeks of summer, please think about whether you really need that campfire” said NYSDEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. “It’s been a hot and dry summer, leading to a drought watch and high fire danger.”
Should you build a campfire, officials say to keep an eye on it to make sure the wind doesn’t spread the fire unexpectedly and to make sure the fire is completely out and cold to the touch before leaving.
NYSDEC continues to encourage New Yorkers and visitors to follow these recommendations to reduce the risk of wildfires.
- Use existing campfire rings where possible
- Build campfires away from overhanging branches, steep slopes, rotten stumps, logs, dry grass, and leaves. Pile extra wood away from the fire
- Clear the area around the ring of leaves, twigs, and other flammable material
- Never leave a campfire unattended. Even a small breeze could cause the fire to spread quickly.
Leave a Reply