Fire Chief On Spring Fire Safety

Aftermath of a field fire the Greenville Fire Department responded to Saturday on Dry Creek Road.

Firemen throughout Bond County have responded to an increasing number of grass and field fires recently, including five over the weekend.

Greenville Fire Chief Bill Johnston told WGEL spring can be a dangerous time to burn and “controlled burns” can get out of your control very quickly.

“We’ve still got a lot of dead vegetation out there,” Johnston said. “Grass hasn’t greened up, the weeds haven’t started yet. All that might not seem like an awful lot, but it slows the fires down. I don’t know how many times we’ve been to fires and people said, ‘I sure didn’t know it would go that fast’. Well, it does.”

He also noted that if you’re burning in high winds and the fire gets away from you and causes damage to someone else’s property, you could be legally liable.

Chief Johnston said if you are conducting a controlled burn and you think it may be getting away from you, don’t hesitate to call for help.

“If you think it’s getting away from you, please don’t hesitate to call. I’m sure I’m talking for all the fire departments here in Bond County. We’d just as soon be there when its a small one as when its a large one.”

Johnston also said it’s always a good idea to call your local police department or fire dispatcher to let them know you’re conducting a burn. That will cut down on false alarm calls, should a passerby notice smoke and report a fire.